This blank paper is the one good thing.
I want to fill it with colour, soundlessness
like a heart that shuts with slow murmurings.
I feel myself slipping into that whiteness.
My dumb legs, my red hair pale by moonlight
as I doze into a laudanum pod,
secretly happy, blooming in the night
though the cold surrounds my bed.
This is the woman as God has created her,
this is the woman I am outdoing.
— Leanne O’Sulivan, from “Self Portrait.” Poetry International Rotterdam. Jun 1, 2006.