Vassar Student Review

Vassar Student Review

panfollicular epilogue

By Sam Panken

at long last I am

a “Porcelain Ivory” replica 

(makeup shade #1, the palest, 

does it cover the pink, puckered skin to my mother’s liking?)

A Roman plastic surgeon’s hand’s copy of the Greek original 

and I stand at attention in your bathroom, 

Aphrodite, naked but for my context.


were I to mount the pile of your clothes and stand stock-still: 

I might be like the women in the museum,

not the honey jar of flesh but the marble, 

illuminated, poised as if to take a step, 

unhindered but for the unbalance of a blemish on my left side. 


it’s not as if I’m clay, nor tusk,

despite what it says on the bottle

I am elastic of the block that bore me,

standing in your bathroom,

tolerating bad lighting, insufficient makeup, 

until gravity turns me to marble and I am placed in the museum, 

in the honey jar,

poised as if to take a step. 

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