house of mirrors

my face was a jungle gym 
or an equation to be solved
without division. a nose 
flanked by two trees.
mouths of august & ivy.
i used to take myself apart
& put my tongue out on the clothesline.
waving like a pageant octopus.
what exists but is not spoken 
is a different kind of real. 
this is what it means 
to be my own basket.
a dozen eyes down a hallway
each with her own decision 
to become a something-else.
geese make arrows to be used
on future keyboards. for now
they are flying south 
not for winter but 
for the hell of it. 
i take my something-else-ness
away from the patio where
even the sun has duplicates:
bright & humming. jumping beans
on a shelf all fall to the floor
& jitter. the spotlight 
doesn't notice me & stay green 
until i cough. when the nurse 
draws up blood she only needs
to do it once because
in the mirrors there are 
many many more vials. 
a precision is lost though
between each iteration
& by the last it is the blood
of a dragon. the basement mirrors 
make my face a shadow box.
doll & shoe & birth certificate.
i am a proof machine.
here is the details: i once asked
to see myself clearly 
& from all possible angles.
the next day i woke up
in the house. a mirror for
every fear. a mirror for every
desire. my favorite one
is black. a scrying mirror.
it is the only one who sees
my pupils with clarity.
i keep it covered 
at the back of the refrigerator.
go there & ask
"is this still my face?"
the mirror always answers yes.
what will i do when one day
she, telling the truth,
admits "no" ?

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