In a land made believable, a looking-glass

was subjected to looks and stares from faces

that artfully distracted distant cares.

So, the looking-glass discreetly stared back

and deflected their prayers. And reflected

on how, behind the procession of faces,

a swathe of silent, invisible figures

drifted about the room and were never mentioned.

Or seen. The outlook was bleak.

Instead, it was make-up eyed in shadow,

forever blinking in the blinding light.

The blanket that had been draped over

the looking-glass and used to protect it

had long since fallen beyond embarrassment.

It could no longer cover the pane

of smeared messages left since the journey

from the polished manufacturer.

The looking-glass had borne witness.

And had dutifully faced the veneer of the world.

But no lacquer, no spray could smooth the looking-glass.

It only misted over the flawed breaths.

Outside the window, the looking-glass saw

a coat had been scraped off the back of a poor soul,

who could not face this land anymore.

The coat had been nailed to a flapping scarecrow

propped in a worn, fallow field.

The looking-glass had eyed all this frenzied activity

with the air of one glazed beyond mirroring.

This land was, indeed, a strange place:

a place where ruthless scarecrows were better dressed

and showed more naked ambition

than the poor souls who lacked possession.

A place where no one dared to look out

of the window, in case a soulful expression

made a face that stared back accusingly.

Instead, drawn by the lure of the looking-glass,

the faces posed and preened, masquerading

as themselves. The looking-glass simply continued

to reflect back with the required distortion.

But also viewed how, when too much rouge leaked out,

shards of shattered faces fell to earth.

Frantic, featureless and easily broken,

the faces would then reassemble themselves,

before a watchful, patrolling look-out

dutifully glued back their cold, brittle eyes.

They had looked directly into the sun

and so the pretence of blinded sight continued.

No one faced the window or saw the poor souls

manifested behind them in the room anymore,

because, as the looking-glass considered

upon reflection, the room was full of scarecrows.

irror Mirror

copyright Asidescapes 2014