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Camera Obscura 
by John RC Potter

This darkened chamber
that is your heart,
taking these mental pictures
and making love just an art.


An image begins to take hold
when this light is reflected,
shadows begin to take shape
as another love is deflected.


I am a camera:
a blind unblinking eye on you,
gathering evidence from the prints
in a vain search for just one clue.


When you see yourself there
an image then comes to mind
of someone, something, somewhere
and just what you’ve left behind.


The vision shifts and settles
inverted, the image takes on a form;
the greatest shadows will appear
across the sky just before a storm.


And yet you are not the mystery
nor is it found in what you do,
it has something to do with me
and my inability to say adieu.


Our fates seem to be so intertwined,
we cannot get distance from what we are;
we need to see our love from a camera,
through a shaded aperture, from afar.

John R.C. Potter is an international educator and gay man from Canada, living in Istanbul. His poems, stories, essays, and reviews have been published in a range of magazines and journals, most recently in Blank Spaces, (“In Search of Alice Munro”, June 2023), Literary Yard (“She Got What She Deserved”, June 2023), Freedom Fiction (“The Mystery of the Dead-as-a-Doornail Author”, July 2023), and The Serulian (“The Memory Box”, September 2023). The author has over a dozen upcoming publications in the coming months, including an essay in The Montreal Review. Twitter:

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