The NY Literary Magazine

A Distinguished Selection of the Finest Modern Literature

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tragic poems

Behind that Smile by Eva Hore

I hear his voice, this priest who speaks of you,
Strong, controlled, all eyes are riveted to him,
He gives your eulogy, an acclamation of your life
As he understands it.
He boasts your beautiful smile,
And of that he speaks the truth.

In that smile is the love of God he says
And like a bolt of lightning I jerk up straight.
Shocked to my very core I am sickened.
‘Liar.’ I yearn to scream, ‘it is not as you say.
Behind that smile was abhorrence, fear and loathing.’

You are dead and now you are at peace
But what of me, the daughter you leave behind.
I am your flesh and blood, the one you were to protect
You allowed him, you knew and did but not stop him.
You forgave his exploitations by your omission
And in denial continued to smile at all around you.

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