1653 c/o Laura Kochman

Infant / Infanta
1653      it begins         the slow bloom
of portraits, of a swollen cheek
heavy and soft in oils, baby skin
blushing           little roller
little thing.           A match struck
will burn hotter every year. The first of many
corsets, stiff skirts       hands hovering
on other surfaces       as if to say
I am here, Uncle, and I can set the table.
As if to say      I am full
like this round rose        petals like skirts
can open in layers, the years
your anxious friends.       1653     a proposal
the first of many promises      a small thing
harmless as a lost tooth      we are skipping
many pleasantries        Uncle, we
direct our gazes downward,
we       see each other only. This painter
loves me       with every pearl     white
highlight on lace        every exposed wrist.
As if to say      why don’t you stroke
my face       call me cosset      a brush
did it once.