Lounge Act || Hailey Andrews

She may shed persimmon feather boas, but there is no rebirth here. Under the damning spotlight she is diasporic lipstick from the pouting and wailing, Dubonnet siphoning into developing wrinkles, aged Jessica Rabbit incarnate, red nails and sagging contours, a saunter with the jolted rhythm of a caught bicycle spire. Coiled nicotine puddles at the base of the stage, submerging the blushing love seats with the upholstery ripped, a set of velvet, pouting wounds. Men in cubist suits sulk in the shadows, an amoebic, pinstriped mass, bleeding together in the keys of the pianist. She wonders if they notice, could detect the trickling purrs or trace the pearly strain streaking ravines in her foundation, the remnants of glamor dying in the dim light. When the ballad is over, she retreats to her bulb-framed hall of mirrors and watches the reflected woman fracture.

This was originally published in Spring 2018 edition of The Helix.