A Middle-Aged Roué Takes A Seasonal Look in His Mirror*

The masks he’s worn.
Rasputin.  Ivan the Terrible.
                        The Satyr.
Something about the eyes
Does it, he guesses.
Phosphorescence of swamp fires.
Some incandescent fusion
Of lust, remorse, intelligence and pain
That flashes from his pupils
Like Christmas lights
On an overburdened tree,
Blinding his victims.
(You wouldn’t call it charm.)
And he goes along with it,
Their nicknames.
Eager to be somebody.

Today, his eyes in the mirror
Dull as a scuffed shoe.
The fires not out, but frozen
By the prospect of being alone
At Christmas.

In a week begins the new year.
He must find somebody to be.

*Unpublished; copyright © 2007.