rossellini shooting while the
seamstress ceases copying life,
Grand Central Station, NYC, 1958

by John Eivaz and P.J. Nights

the seamstress
is distant from all, in a swirl of fabric and darkness,
she hides in copied creations from Armani and Dior,
watching not a movie, but a movie made,
not knowing it'd be scrapped before shown,
she thinks, pearls would go good with that dress,
who's that actress -- much prettier than a Rockette!
ahh, how like the sun and language of love Italian is,

even though she can't hear the stars or the director,
the technical staff in its overworked trance,
the terminal space has its own sound which is no sound
when filled by real sounds crisscrossing and murmuring.

the director
speeds through crafty reality and ansia dell'esistenza
in an Alfa Romeo, each change of terminus
requires a change in muse, so he steals men's wives
under the fat cameras of paparazzi,
he is larger than life, yet
his cameras turn to reasons for living.

the stage
has been chosen, a real locale,
a passageway to eyes he needs now
to continue his work, a stage he contours with temper,
a stage already there, like these dresses in her head
culled from the pages of magazines, culled from the picture,
the movies, the dreams, the backwards slide towards authenticity
never slides down all the way,
never ascends to the pre-existant shot, or seam, or choice of color.

the movies
are foreign even in Brooklynese,
the reason for the color or the woman, the angle and the shot
a whimsical one, in the sense that one can frame a desire
but never show it, everything is parts, easy to see,
the lighting and lace, the stitches, the starlets
and the screenplay, but nothing she can attempt in her
parlor's corner, or he under the dome of interior stars
can bring the authentic, the interlock or the dissolve -- the life
to a world of 'one more' and multiple takes.

the seamstress
leaves the station, and the people
and lights, and the general milling confusion
is no longer enticing, and she heads to
other former enticements, no longer proceeding,
and she sits in her dark parlor
waiting for the flickers of her life
to begin.

©2001 by John Eivaz and P.J. Nights

John Eivaz and P.J. Nights collaborated on this poem for a contest about Rossellini. See their individual work also: Hangover Sestina and Selected Poems.

P.J. Nights lives in coastal Maine with her family and various pound pets. She teaches physics and astronomy. Her poetry and stories have been or will be published online at Erotica Readers Association, Clean Sheets, Erosha, Erotic Epistle, Adult Story Corner, Mind Caviar, Amoret, the Emerald Collection and MiPoesias. See more of her work at her Web site.

John Eivaz was born in New York and now lives in California. His writing has been featured in a few small press publications, and also online at various Web sites. He was a staff member of Haiku Headlines (aka The Full Deck) for over a year, contributing news haikus, limericks and funny topical songs. He is the poetry and flash editor of the Erotica Readers Association, and his poetry appeared in Slow Trains Issue 1. Writing as "john e," his poetry and prose has appeared online at Clean Sheets, Mind Caviar, Ophelia's Muse, Erotica Readers Association and other Web sites. Read more of his work at the Web site he shares with PJ Nights. He works at a winery.

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