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  • Jessica Lee McMillan

Pictures of You

Updated: Apr 11

Ghazal after The Cure’s Disintegration by Jessica Lee McMillan

Image by Pedro Klien on flickr, CC.


Plainsong broadcasts through stained glass, splinters color on my pictures of you/

My heathen heart kneels at your mosaic-lit pew, these pictures of you

I pull you from dark drifts, with these pictures of you I forget my feet/

Your starred webs weave me with endless rain in your blue, these pictures of you

Closedown to sombre pattering thoughts in quiet shade of grave, yearned notes/

In moonlit fog sings the insomniac who drew these pictures of you


I seek refuge in your glamour-scented eyes and sanguine lovesong taste/

My secret spark warms a dark asylum with you, my pictures of you


Desire stretches in blurred streaks from our last dance at the edge of the sky/

Waiting for goodbye you leave me in winter hue, these pictures of you


Dining on darkness, I devour the lullaby and drug my hunger/

My gloom heart beats a sublime narcotic that grew these pictures of you

We smashed heartbreak glass on Fascination Street, costumed under twilight/

This parade is a last kiss, last turn of the screw, these pictures of you

The reckoning comes in prayers for rain, pouring dust in the anguished drought/

I offered enough tears begging for oceans through these pictures of you

And the rains flood me in godless echo, the same deep water as you/

Sunken lush in smothered coasts, my mind drowned in dew, these pictures of you

And my cries open rivers, drag disintegration clouds to bright end/

And acid paths glint from the abyss where I strew these pictures of you


My retreat to melancholy is soft lament in homesick honey/

Sunny-pane memory brings me a dazzling view, these pictures of you


The untitled poet joys in stormy seasons to feel ghosts it brings/

They bring dark words for the lens written of love true, these pictures of you


Jessica Lee McMillan © 2021

For this ghazal, a poetic form likened to music itself, each couplet has 17 syllables per line and each is inspired by a song from The Cure’s 14-track masterpiece, Disintegration. The refrain is from the second track “Pictures of You”, and the name of each song from the album appears in the first line of each couplet.



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