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Phantasm by Fabrice Poussin

Standing there

the safe side of a window

accomplice of their secrets

sharer of pains too familiar.

It seems a world continues

out there full of laughter

joys of multiple kinds a little

symphony on a makeshift stage

risks renewed on a manufactured mountain.

More comfort is found in solitude

where all remains buried deeply

no fear needed of a revelation

skin deep inadvertently blurted

out with a single syllable uttered

too quickly, too widely with

the embarrassed chuckle.

He sees through the slats of protective

blinds a land revealed as fragments

sharp with souls’ edges they

must not be touched.

The sentence: exile,

leper in quarantine

no longer allowed to assemble

the puzzle of his simple desire.

The pieces sharp as hopes,

cut to his bruised soul

no matter how much he pleads

a voice muffled by the deep walls

too close he remains still.

The crowd is now so foreign

no one waves, no one feels,

as he dies, while his last tear

hesitant, rolls to oblivion.

Fabrice Poussin teaches French and English at Shorter University. Author of novels and poetry, his work has appeared in Kestrel, Symposium, The Chimes, and many other magazines. His photography has been published in The Front Porch Review, the San Pedro River Review, as well as other publications.

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