13 Ways to Look at a Face

by Justin Marrier


Whatever the sex of the visage,
Male and Female,
Mother and Father,
Son and Daughter.
Do we cast these roles of life
From the face alone?

Fresh from the womb
or elderly dilapidated,
an age is untold behind this mask.
The talons of Corvus dance across
the eyes of the wise;
While new-born’s: as smooth as plush silk.

Dark or light,
Black or white,
A rainbow of shades.
From the Yellow of the East,
To the Charcoal of the jungles,
To the Chestnut of the West.
Does the color of a face
Define our own true race?

Signs of age slice through the black,
Drops of honey mist the golden locks.
Strings of grey lie lifeless and meek,
curls of chocolate gleam glossy and chic.
Blazing reds burn bright in the sun,
The shining scalp of a man who has none.

Jagged flying “V”s and bushy clouds of fur,
As if from a bear,
or wolf,
or hare.
When in a rapt contemplation of a thought,
To the roof they often rise,
Moistened with sweat,
When the temple often cries.
One may decide to augment,
with a curious look of confusion.
Whereas the other lies stationary,
without a single intrusion.

Alluring, enigmatic orbs
flooded in hues of cool ocean blue.
Reflecting the earth and Mother herself,
In rich greens of olive and pine.
Melting caramel engulfing a cloud of ebony,
Petrifying with a stare,
Of umber and mahogany.
Some must hide behind
shards of healing glass,
To improve the broken ball,
or simply a touch of class.

The downward slope of a hooked,
the shifting angle of a crooked.
A Moses descendent is long and arched,
A new-born’s: small and buttoned.

Specks of ginger
from the sun,
spackle the bridge and cheeks above.
The auburn flakes
rise from the skin,
to dot the face
from deep within.

Attached to head
Or free to fly.
Pierced to the brim
Or hidden and shy.
The waves of flesh
make up the lobes,
A jungle cruise down the canal
Past forests of hair and dunes of wax
To the beating of the drum
To some rings strong-
others not at all.

Curled to snarl,
Pursed to hate.
Wide for joy,
Gasped in shock.
Smirk of Sarcasm or deceit,
in hope or envy or defeat.
Dry and cracked from the winds
Smooth and shiny from the gloss
Slathered in shades of hues:
Scarlet, magenta, mauve, and blues

Engraved like divots
On the mowed green grass,
Like chips or cracks,
In a smooth piece of glass.
These craters of the damned
Etched deep around the smile,
In those fortunate ones
Who have two or one in style.

Squares of ivory and porcelain,
Fragile and frail.
Tracks of metal align
the jagged and twisted
white or yellowed trail.
Like pearls plucked
from the oyster’s hold,
gaps from the missing,
dingy, rotted, or old.

Everyone looks different,
Due to our heritage and genes.
Everyone is changing,
Likes the leaves of the trees.
Everyone has their own,
Identity, self, and place.
Every one is unique,
Your own,
Your face.


Category: Poetry, SNHU Creative Writing, SNHU online creative writing