Tease of Unlikeness


   Only a few

fragments of the new-

     ly found


face are

    intact. The death

  mask, I


mean—only some

   parts not u-

sually deemed


   parts, pasty

shards, random




the man at

     the podium—feigning chance



   fingers, his skin

taut & grainy when


enlarged onto the front of the dang-

       ling flat surface



  behind him

against the wall. The audience,

         silent. The fake



face; the room,

   not huge. The room


not small. Swells of

   whispers hush-



   pieces half-

fitting for

   a moment, making        


a corner of sorts. The

man at the podium

   stopping, stepping


back, circling

   the projector, the audience

watching the ridged


               image behind him

all the time—the left

   half of a brow


   maybe, no, the

brunt of the

   lips, those two turned


   puffs or just 

one lip, socket

curves—no, no, a chin


   niche, cheek

hook, nostril

      clump nostril


frame? The cracked fake face. The audience,

perchance approaching

   the podium. The



perhaps being

      the brokenness.


                                                                           (first appeared in American Letters & Commentary #24)