is an Italian word
that suggests a conspiracy
of facts among the dead,
eyes gorged on fear,
invisible smiles
chanting litanies
of papers with purple
prose massacres,
the truth of it all
boiling down to survival.
The only honest thing
I can see in this world
is a bonfire burning
our muted reflections,
a cracked eggshell
on the lip of a bowl,
a looking-glass field
of laudanum
and daisies.



(© Phoebe Pan)