One Poem by James Bell

Written in response to this month’s Special Challenge.

fragmented lives

nothing is whole except the picture on the wall
even the glass on the table is half empty – or
is it half full – the former is chosen as it’s a little
more empty and the match box is scratched
to the point of being  suspiciously empty itself

in a case of what you see is not what you get
each subject is open to interpretation – what
happened before television and social media
and smoking became a pursuit for pariahs
in a still as possible life study as tableau

the picture on the wall draws you into a story
two lolling figures in the room cannot tell –
indistinct though looks like a semi-nude
of a woman where the faint image of a man
hovers in the background as threat or memory

the suggestion is that neither no longer exist
are in a constant state of fading within their medium
the Prussian blue becomes darker as if drawing
an end to a relationship in contrast to the stasis
that does nothing in the room and you want to ask if

the picture will fall when its image is fully devoured –
give a jolt to the languor before it or everything else
will darken or just stay as it is until another end
comes to pass – though the pose could remain frozen
until the concept of another end comes to pass


James Bell – returned to writing poetry over twenty years ago and has not yet left. He is a regular contributor to Nine Muses’ Special Challenges.

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