Face to Face

by David Wagoner

At the outer corners of the eyes, the skin
has come to points like directional indicators,

and at the inner curves of the nose, two slashes
have put an end to the smile of a level mouth.

Above the brow, the fiveline musical staff
has repeatedly repeated and repeated

itself from a slow start, only itself,
to close without a coda or even a note.

The single quotation mark above the bridge

says nothing will come before and nothing after.

In a mirror, it seems evident what didn’t
happen to what’s now looking back at it.