The Best Literary Writing About Mothers and Motherhood
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Face Card: Queen of Shadows by Mary Craig

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Face Card: Queen of Shadows

Retrat de la meve germana, 1923/1926

Dalí
I think you tried
a classic portrait first
pale face, calm eyes, curved brows & hair

blushed lips
and cheeks
then said fuck this
and flipped the canvas up-
side down to paint your sister’s ghost
staring

wild eyed
past a cobwebbed cloak, her former
visage swinging crown-down
like a belted
trophy

thickened
fingers stroke the comely displaced
chin—unopposed the Queen
of Shadows plays
her trump


Mary Craig’s recent publications include an essay in Quarterly West. She received the 2014 Writers at Work Fellowship in Literary Nonfiction. An Ohio native, she currently lives, writes, and teaches in southwest Germany. Her blog is chapterthis.blogspot.com.

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