After a milkless instant
and your first smoke,
you upturn your make-up bag
to let a fall of Rimmel
scatter across the table.

I watch transfixed
as if witnessing a pharaonic
anointing as you smooth in
your tinted creams, until you
take on a mountain air glow.

It takes hard work to look
as if you're wearing nothing,
you tell me, cramming your face
into a compact's mirror, to apply
one last layer of nothing.

Stephen Bone

If you have any thoughts on this poem, Stephen Bone would be pleased to hear them.