Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Issue Twenty-nine
Summer 2012
My Favorite Aunt and Uncle Star in One Long Silent Movie
Valerie Loveland

They stop talking
and instead, mouth towards a camera,
position themselves
best side out.

The conversations don’t matter as much
as how they look saying it.

In black and white, there’s no reason to match colors.
There’s also no reason to maintain a hairstyle
with all the wigs in their expanding wardrobe.
My uncle’s mustaches are real.
It seems like he has too many for that to be possible,
but a hearty mustache
can be styled many different ways.

There is a secret compartment in the back of the closet
with stairs that lead to the attic. There, they keep the costume

Her daisies wilt and revive
in their vase depending on the state of things.
Same thing happens to my uncle’s boutonniere.

His quit smoking scene was so popular
he starts and stops smoking almost daily.

Their dog hides his eyes with his paws.
His only trick—he performs it for every situation.
He’s hiding his face right now!

My aunt put on what I assume is the reddest lipstick in the world
so her mouth can tell the audience
that she’s expecting. My uncle’s hat leaps
vertical off his head into the air.

About Valerie Loveland

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