"The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors"
Margaryta Golovchenko (she/her) is a settler-immigrant, poet, critic, and academic based in Tkaronto / Toronto, Treaty 13, and Williams Treaty territory, Canada. The author of two poetry chapbooks, she is completing her MA in art history and curatorial studies at York University.
“‘The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors’ responds to Marcel Duchamp’s The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even (The Large Glass) (1915–1923).
“‘Kept’ draws on elements of Alphonse Mucha’s commercial posters, particularly ‘Biscuits Lefèvre-Utile’ (1896) and ‘Bières de la Meuse’ (1897).”
until she is nothing more
than a heap of blooms
for her own funeral, becoming
petals if squeezed hard enough.
What comes pouring out of her can easily
be mistaken for sap
by those who came
without invitation, now watching it drip
down their hand and gently caress
the fingertips, mistaking self-preservation
for a warm greeting.
There is no excuse to the violation
no even despite although
as somewhere right now
there is a wedding dress coming undone
taffeta and mesh
and the whole nine yards
of bandaging, bandaging, bandaging.
Behold the solution to dull predictability
in an array of digestible forms, faces, an evident typology
that ends with the eye, a gloss of minimal effort.
in the glimmering colours, smears of pastel and the occasional curve of a letter,
bright and eye-catching
like a bite that takes a chunk of consciousness with each glance. This
is our glorious present
which constantly shifts, readjusts,
sheds a couple feathers and peels off a layer
when it withers out of fashion. A stable
ecosystem of the infinitely and eternally —
the what is based on preference. Here
there is such a thing as ideal chocolate and everything
is measured in rivers: flowers and liquors, the proper hair length
for a quick escape should the need be pressing,
not that you would need nor want it.