The writer is surprised, delighted
to discover this.
The painting of the mirror (which
still exists) exists. Martha,
the little wife reflected in the mirror,
washing her hands,
does not exist. The painter,
who, after seeing the reflection of Martha
in the mirror, put the paint slowly
on canvas over many days, anxiously
replaying the moment
when he saw Martha reflected
in the mirror,
does not exist.
Paint exists, though, as with everything
in this list, not everywhere
or all the time. I exist. For now.
The writer, delighted that the mirror still exists,
does not herself still exist. My memory
of that sentence, crisp as an apple,
does not itself precisely exist, or
flickers in and out, depending.
Veils of air hanging before the mirror exist,
constantly rearranging themselves, waiting
for Martha to impatiently
push them aside. The mirror
The Threepenny Review