We loved her years ago, before
the lines of age could ever mark her face,
before the history books defined her place
in wax museums and in cinematic lore –
before we knew her, we had loved her so
as one might love a memory of snow-
white skin and rosy lips – and more
we loved her for she seemed to need
our love, we wanted her to feed
upon our unfulfilled desire.
Even in life she was not really there,
she had become an icon to us then –
and if she’d lived, with crow’s feet round her eyes,
I and a million other men
would love her, filled with our still-young memories.