Verse: African Mask


Not the usual grimace,
A smiling face.

The carver intermediary,
who entered the spirit so effectively
into the dark forest wood,
guarded it  with two unfriendly birds.
It smiles but I have become aware
that the joke is not one I would share.
Through hooded eyes it peers slyly,
at my English lounge and me.
The smile could be friendly, or the dead
smile on a severed head.

It hangs on a nail smiling at me …or not!