Science & Technology
The Muscles Of The Face

The front of the skullís alive
with them, dabs, brushstrokes,
dashes, slants, a knifed-on map
of confederated dutchies, a quilt,
weave, an underlayment of moving
parts, muscles whose single task is
shaping the complex weather playing
over the eloquent plain of the face.

The morphing mask is, in the end,
simple mechanics, solid electrical
engineering: motors and anchors,
feedback loops and force-couples
which embroider, enlarge or eclipse
whatís spoken, or to signal, sell
or frankly sabotage in the absence of
actual speech. And working always,
arguably, in the service of a thornier,
more complicated truth. Think

of your mother, young, her face
a radiant treasure reopened exclusively
for you each morning: its comfort,
complexion, dimensions and depth;
its hidden rooms, shadows, silences.
It was the book you learned to read

long before a first word, jacketed,
jigsawn, coded, cruel, whirred suddenly
on the page and, with transfiguring, still-
compounding consequences, opened.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Copyright 2008,  Timothy Kelly

Timothy Kelly is a physical therapist, poet, teacher living in Olympia. Previous books are from Floating Bridge Press, Seattle, and Oberlin College Press, who published a new collection, The Extremities in Spring 2008. Heís into bodies.

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