Make-up artist High Street da Vinci
has me fooled, cries: “the colour pops!”
Dolly Bird, Platinum Ho and Badass Babez
sweep from liquid to matte on my gullible dehydrated lips
and the words “thank you.”
She and I are conspirators against an ugly world
in that ten minutes.
When the colour pops and does me justice.
Electric blue pops on my juddering eyelids
proud as Punch smacking Judy silly.
Pops to prick throats like the carbonated bubbles of corner shop lemonade.
With all the charm of a lacklustre blemish
or weasel, matted and coarse; its friction burns ravaging my chin.
Pops loud like a haemorrhaged balloon stamped on by red Mary Janes at a 5-year-old’s unruly birthday party, so all the children scream.
For those ten minutes.
The money shot is never worth the money.
After the colour pops
and you leave more unlovely than before.
Amy Charlotte Kean is an advertising strategist, lecturer and writer from Essex. Her stories, rants, reviews and poems can be found in The Guardian, Disclaimer, Shots, Litro, Barren and the Drum. She was Ink, Sweat & Tears’ Poet of the Month in September 2018 and her first book, The Little Girl Who Gave Zero F*cks is out now.