Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Window Pane

by Ben Stroman

I
Through the fog and rain
I saw it,
As if looking from the other side,
My image alone
In the window pane.

II
I was not aware of the heat,
But of its’ symptoms.
There below the glaring window pane,
I was reminded of the season.

III
It was cold against my face,
And comforting, and it felt
As if I were invisible.
The invisible man,
Seen through the visible window pane.

IV
The window pane turned into
Translucent knives,
Stabbing and transforming.
Spilling the blood I cared nothing about
Until the drops became streams,
And the streams became unending.

V
The tinkling of glass was no longer
Unnerving.
It in fact reminded me more of a
Dinner party
Than that of a window pane
Leaving its’ final bits of light
On the hood of the car.

VI
Was it there?
Was the presence I felt
Being born through some great cosmic event?
Or was it the window pane,
Flashing like a knife,
Keeping me within the room.

VII
I could no longer use its’ feature,
As the mud from the river spoiled
The window panes’
Main asset.

VIII
Along the bayou,
896 window panes
Made a reminder for a man and a woman to be cautious
Of their actions.

IX
Hot breath on one side,
Tingling winter on the other.
I draw a face on the window pane,
And then quickly replace it
With the mirrored letters
O-L-L-E-H.

X
Before my body arrived
Inside the room,
My nerves permeated the window pane.
I saw her for
The first time.

XI
Underneath the window pane
We enjoyed a moment of love
In which everything
That danced outside
Seemed to be pressed
Between the glass
And the infinite edge of the sky.

XII
The razors’ sharpness was so much like
The window pane I looked through
As I decided the fate
Of every single black hair
Upon my face.
They had no chance.

XIII
Seven years I would wait.
The window pane,
Which had become
My mirror,
Was no longer one,
But many.
Each would be dangerous
And each contained
Seven more years.

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