For my elemental friend (and the statue of his mother)

You have that violin face
Cheeks held in and strident


A pizzicato 
When you laugh


You imagine 
Your mother lost her arms
In an undefined post-industrial accident 
But it is just the way she sits
In the shadowed folds
Of voluminous robes
Romanesquely disappearing


Made of all those dead butterflies


The velvet hammer blows
Of half-drunk pyrethrum 


Wears a beauty mask, most evenings
The grey mud of warfare


Steam rising from the endothermic heat
Like Botticelli’s Venus


From the mezzanine
Crowned in smoke
Where you harshly inhale and expel
In quiet disequilibrium, looking on


With a jackanapes grin

A hollow sound in your chest
Of trains slowly leaving

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