Woman at the Opera

('La Loge,' Renoir, 1874) At first, across the room, We see only that she is beautiful, Hair upswept, leaning Almost out of the frame.

Coming closer, we learn She is not alone. Though the way Her shadowy companion Scans an unseen balcony With his opera glass, we know She cannot have fastened Flowers at her waist Nor in her hair for him, Nor wound the pearls around Her neck, nor picked The black and white gown.

She needs no glass To find the one She dressed for, who must Be talking and laughing With some new friend - For one side of her face Weeps as she looks Past us, even as We see she understands,

And we are together and alone.

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