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Order in dressing is needed, coherence in deceit. He repeated this
smoothing with his hands the edge of his jacket, the lapels,
the shirt untouched around the collar
too tight and yet just right for the image in the mirror.
A sweeping gesture, a touch to his hair perfectly groomed
and all the rest: perfection, he repeated
posing confidentially with the face learnt from the man on TV.
I am better if you look closely, more true too:
he looked at the reflection of his eyes, the agreement
of the image with the side he wanted.
His skin too, the right colour, the tone acquired in time
in the solarium a step away from home. Perfection, he repeated
presenting himself in the doorway to his wife already dressed.
Hand in hand without speaking. They never said anything any more. Too often
they couldn’t think of what to say. Looking closely he couldn’t find other things actually
most of all a reason to stay.
Registro dei Fragili
translated from the Italian by Anthony Robbins