Reasons for Magritte’s Sheets
1. Strip is what you ask of them, and you laugh
as I tell you that the painting’s a nude.
2. An exercise in disguise, The Lovers
used to be orphans playing hide-and-go-seek.
Here they are now, not knowing the difference.
3. From what we know of “concealment”: It is
a noun used often for facts or weapons.
4. Witness a new form of species evolve.
The female’s bare arm is tanned and turning
sheltered. She grows her own curtains for skin.
She grows her own skin for the two of them.
5. Young René once saw his mother’s dress draped
over her face, her corpse rained with river.
6. Maybe they’re just bad at this.
7. There is no embrace here, only the placement
of heads in museums, intent on collecting dust.
8. We wanted an instance where all things held.
9. This is one way of dying: masking breaths.
This is, in fact, every way of dying.
10. He paints a series of these and calls two
Les Amants. The landscape, the kiss—he makes
sure no pair lies beneath the same cloth.
11. You look at them and tell me, Ghosts. I am
starting to shape a sense of recurrence.
12. Questions have been asked of the fabric. Some
say barrier, others bind. The lovers don’t hear them
under their veils. They’ve lost the end of this
new war, their lips caught in reckless tugging.
13. His shrouds are a common motif. But men
in hats and coats are more common.
14. Maybe they like the taste of textile better.
15. In his words: “It does not mean anything
because mystery means nothing either.”
16. None of us were meant to see what was cursory.
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