The Photograph by John C. Mannone

The Photograph
John C. Mannone

The fireplace embers a warmth
into the room, coals glow dull red,
cold air lifts its bitter edge.

I see you on our favorite sofa,
the one with paisley cones, feathered
cushions. You in silk, provocative,

sheer lavender clinging to all your
sensuous curves. I call for you,
but I cannot hear your answer,

only echoes of empty chambers,
plaintive wails, my own reflections.
I am deafened by the moans,

the haunting resonance in my chest.
Do you remember the last time we met
by the lake? What you whispered?

I still smell the jonquils in your hair,
your moist breath, I can still taste
the wild passion of your lips

that fevered the air—the cool lake
could never quench it. We, ethereal
in that liquid, shimmered

in sunglare, yet tangible—the way
your eyes touched mine in that mirror.
My thoughts, vapor, mixing with a waft

of your perfume. But now I am trapped
in sepia, glass pressing hard on my soul.
I am a mere ghost calling to his lover.

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