these days

I sift for flecks of amethyst

at the crux of an immense hourglass

it’s structural integrity tested at the edifice

by slow ebbing tremors

of antecedent identity

my reflexiveness proves resolute

as the west continues beckoning

seeming to undress me indefinitely

it peels away at the décolleté

shedding like ribs of bib lettuce

the lattice of superfluous fabrics

instilled by the distance

from where I became

these days I am fastened steadfast

in an armada of eyelets

clasps requisite of a quiet life

duties and carousels

a mannequin dressed impeccably

having martyred myself

adorned in appeasements

trussed in addendums

drunk on distractions

the aperitifs and the aftermaths

as my adoring emissary

my vermilion paramore

unlaces the corset

that restrains my fury

kissing the baleen-made indentations

of the present tense

searching my flesh

for tenderness in hibernation

with the precision of clock hands

rewinding themselves

it soothes my ordinary existence

by tending

to who I once was

with the tangerine fingers

of the pacific sunset

it strums the tautness

of my heart’s seams

plucking like a harp

in reprise of eternal Spring

and I tense with the pleasure

of a newborn monarch

in the virginal spreading

of it’s wings

a. duncan, 2020



Lyrics: Here lies another number
Etched in the wall of stones
Field of broken hearts
Power lines and creosote
Caught in the certain state
I thought I was closer
I was only losing
My sense of touch and
We never did it sober
Time is a wounded hue
Only revealing


{video featured song: Poppy Ackroyd}

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Amor et melle et felle est fecundissimus || Love is rich with both honey and venom

7 thoughts on “these days

  1. April, you’ve done it again! 😀 Another gorgeous piece woven with such transcendent imagery – so many hidden meanings I could tease out of this and yet still be speechless at the breadth of your imagination. 🌸 Your recital is so warmly hypnotic and your word choice always elegantly spot-on for that exact image you’re seeking.
    These particular lines resonated with me:
    ‘having martyred myself
    adorned in appeasements
    trussed in addendums
    drunk on distractions’
    So true – hectic modern life can bring both blessing and curse in equal measure – how often do we secretly wish we were freed from life’s commitments to forge our own path ahead unshackled by our expectant duties to others? Love your uplifting take on this using the corset as metaphor – there’s something incredibly liberating about wishing to ease off the burdens that constrict our own freedoms, whether work commitments, hectic family schedules or everyday distractions of modern life.
    You always write such beautiful rhythmic poetry with such breathtaking depth that leaves me awestruck.
    TLDR: I. Loved. This. 🌹

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well. You knew I was ALWAYS going to love this, I felt suspended in time, between what is and what once was, gently soothed by your voice and the hands of the clock, and this vermillion paramore that tends to past existence
    “with the tangerine fingers
    of the pacific sunset”.

    But seriously, your final lines are like a hit of serotonin and endorphin
    “and I tense with the pleasure
    of a newborn monarch
    in the virginal spreading
    of it’s wings”

    Seriously, is it going too far to say that is like a ‘little death’??!!! 😂

    Brilliant!!! 🖤🔥🔥

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My vermilion paramore is the Golden Gate Bridge! …. It is a gorgeous, vermilion hue that is now trademarked, as known as “international orange.” The color was also – interestingly enough – an extremely wild and unheard of choice for the time, chosen rather randomly by the main architect based on some random steel construction he’d seen marked up in a similar hue.


      This piece is, in part, an ode to California (my home/origin) and the city of San Francisco.

      Of course you loved it – because – you – delivered the whole concept into my mind, dear Rachel. Wrapped in that thick, jeweled paper we both cherish! Our fascinating discussions about the past, how it intersects with our present. How we still search for pieces of our selves from the previous. How we memorialize even dark times. Etc etc.

      I adore you. Thank you for inspiring me, Rachel. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yet another layer to this magnificent poem – the vermillion paramore as a symbol of your past life, your home town. Something iconic, exciting, holding the traffic of a big city. A bridge between what was and what is, in more ways than one. How many ways can I be in awe of your poetry?

        If our discussions played any role in you writing this masterpiece, sigh. I’m so honoured ❤️


  3. Wow 😍 what a masterpiece!! Siiigghhhh one cannot take this in in one reading, it must be read countless times to absorb it in layers. There are so many gems scattered throughout, I can’t even begin to point out what my favorite line is.

    Liked by 2 people

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