A Note to Henri from His Wife
“It’s me or her.” Madame Matisse, 1930
Flatten the idiosyncrasy from days
until all that remains are flowery shades;
Filter out depth, tightly knotted grays --
nights when our torment ruled. Prettify
the complex stage; iron-out dimension,
then divorce shadow. Display your works
for scholarly fools; let estranged critics
engage in creased tête-à-têtes. Go on, Matisse,
level your latest pet, the ever-quaint Cerise,
lay that blushing cameo. Droll paint will dry,
frame infamy and the lustiness of ego.
This poem was written for the 20 Poem Challenge.
Cyndi MacMillan poetry has recently appeared in Grain Magazine and the Fieldstone Review. Her verse, short fiction and novel-in-progress resentfully compete for her attention. She lives in New Hamburg, Ontario, home to North America’s largest working water wheel. Coffee and family allow ideas to percolate.
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