local_library Easter Tableau

by Scott Burnam

Published in Issue No. 23 ~ April, 1999

You sit naked
on the fire escape
framed by the open window –
a study in gray repose
against sky and city not yet
reflected blue by bonnets,
dresses, suits,
congregate voices.

Sunlight begins to breach
the horizon
silhouetting your breasts
still young in angle
and weight.

A line of three steeples in the west
parallels your
Cesarean scar.
Their pealing bells echo
around the canyon of your womb
awakening your dead.

For hours
through masses and pilgrimage steps
you are drawn this way:
open to the eyes of
huddling penitents –
you wondering
at their faith,
after yours.

The body
stabbed awake by shards of cool linen
knows your absence before
its eyes sharpen to points
of sight.