The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Patty Paine’s “Feral”

feral cover
Nude in the Bathtub, 1935
                   
“He who sings is not always happy.”
                                                     -Pierre Bonnard

Marthe   in the bath     we watch

Bonnard watch her     (a factory

      of persistence)

He embalms her

        with his gaze

Think of them

      in that two-level studio

sequestered     circumscribed     Bonnard

      in furry slippers daubing

at the canvas    the way

      a mother (gently

purposefully) presses tissue to lips—

        tissue to child’s face

We lean in the doorway

      peer over Bonnard’s shoulder

It’s just us and the sound

        of water running

        of steam hissing

through sweating copper pipes

This selection comes from Patty Paine’s chapbook Feral, available from Imaginary Friend Press! Purchase your copy here!

Patty Paine is the author of Grief & Other Animals (forthcoming from Accents Publishing), The Sounding Machine (Accents Publishing), Feral (Imaginary Friend Press), Elegy & Collapse (Finishing Line Press), co-editor of Gathering the Tide: An Anthology of Contemporary Arabian Gulf Poetry (Garnet Publishing & Ithaca Press) and The Donkey Lady and Other Tales from the Arabian Gulf (Berkshire Academic Press). Her poems, reviews, and interviews have appeared in Blackbird, Verse Daily, The Atlanta Review, Gulf Stream, The Journal and other publications. She is the founding editor of diode poetry journal and Diode Editions. She is an Assistant Professor of English at Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar where she teaches writing and literature.

Andrew Koch’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Bluestem, Connotation Press, Mojo, Rust + Moth, and others. Although a Tennessee-native, Andrew presently lives in Spokane, Washington with his wife and cat while teaching literature and pursuing his MFA in Creative Writing at Eastern Washington University.

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