Death's young, lush, smooth skinned, canny,
posed au naturel, cocoa belly
down on an improvised divan, eyes
rolled back to study Gauguin (who
flatters himself she's scared of him). Slapping
liverish paint to a faux
background, fantasy blooms
where the native truth would be: an endless
queue of stunted men,
shuffling forward, shifting dumbly
outside thatched huts infested with fleas.
Inside Death squirms, ever horny, flexing
moist pink lips as if he were a child,
slow to see where to fix his bristling
prick, bury Art, take his pleasure now.
originally published in the G.W. Review, spring 1999