Mel Edden

James Joyce by Berenice Abbott

Thick white cardstock tucked 
inside a book from a friend
selected specifically for me
following previous discussions
I imagine you buying a stack of these
at the National Portrait Gallery
with correspondence on your mind
It is a black and white photo
but I can guess the colours,
your bow tie would be a bright pink, 
or green, or cobalt blue, up against a 
beautifully pressed pale silk shirt
framed by a pristine white jacket.
I wonder about your eye patch
fitted neatly under your dark, metal 
spectacles. Naively, I think, perhaps
you were at a costume party, but 
Google quickly quashes that theory.
You suffered. I can see that now.
You are lost in thought. Unaware
that this moment in time will be
captured and printed on postcards 
and purchased by an artist 
who shares your heritage 
a century after you shaved 
that line down your chin.

© Mel Edden

Mel Edden is a British stay-at-home mom who has lived in Baltimore County for ten years. In 2022 she challenged herself to write a poem a day and so began a delectable adventure of playing with words and greedily reading all she could find. She takes her inspiration from everyday moments, often related to art, nature, or her children.

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