that question

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In a way it’s just like loving a ghost.
Even on our “date” you vanished long

enough to be rude. “Only you,” you boast;
but as I read your new posts am I wrong

to doubt that truth? The problem with the dead
is that they don’t change. You can beg, threaten

and wail but it changes nothing. I’ve said
I hate not trusting you, but that question

refuses to die when I read your posts.
Why hire a soothsayer when I know I

deserve better? — Ghosts might even agree,
they just refuse to stop; that’s why they’re ghosts.

That’s why I’ve finished turning a blind eye.
Little ghost, keep posting. I set you free.

sirloin

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I’d hoped I’d have no need to get upset
though I’ve been others’ sirloin before, burned

outside but juicy in. Juice they won’t get.
I stopped being eatable when they earned

all their scorn; insisting that I just don’t,
“get it.” True, there was a lot I never

got from them, which is why they’re not a note
I sing, a name I’ll claim as a lover

who did me wrong. They’re dead space I cast down
like a jealous god; heartbroken to find

out what they did when I wasn’t around.
Odd how the hungry ones get left behind.

I’d say: Tell me that I’m wrong about you.
Show me that’s something you can even do.

doldrums

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I saw him first among the early hills.
It was arousal that drew me. I heard

voices among the brambles and the chills
I felt just then were odd. It’s been rumored

that the lovelorn can love him. He comes, spun
flakes of winter in hues of gray. — He cums

in ways I do not these days. I’d loved one
who loved others. My long sexless doldrums

were a drag but in the hills I heard song
that roused in me what many a Bacchae

before felt, I’m sure. I won’t tell you what
the two of us did, you’ve proven me wrong

to say what a fey goat-god calls foreplay
with a forlorn queen in a bone corset.

][][

NOTES:
The Bacchae were the female priestesses of the Greek god Dionysus. It is from that word we get Bacchanalia, or holy orgy. The doldrums are an old nautical term, now applied to any period of time involving stagnation and depression.

pleasure off

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Without rest, I said. Urgent. I’ve day-dreamed
enough for two. “Yet it’s just you. What changed?”

That’s the thing. Nothing. I had hoped. It seemed
different. Everyone thinks they want deranged

passion … until they finally have to act
on it. Still, no means no. That’s what matters.

“You could wait.” I did. I let things distract
me. I’m saucy, not cruel. This world pressures

us. I won’t add more. Instead I’ll lick dried
pleasure off these fingers. Inspiration

must sleep somewhere else and I have defied
the gods long enough hoping for passion,

frenzy and someone who loves cock and cunt
as well. —Urgent, I say. —This is urgent.

unsex

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I loved Mad Gruoch the most. All of her poor
impulse control. That hunger for something

like love. Despair. We’d, “feck,” as if some cure
would be found hidden in cresting, crashing

flood tides. It won’t. But in bed her cries
for the spirits to, “unsex,” her—make her

booty thick, came, as she’d cum, with both thighs
quaking. Heartsick, she kept that damn dagger

by the bed. She thought the quip of, “damn spots
on sheets,”
droll. Whoadie: she never once walked

in her sleep, but loved my,“milk of human
kindness,”
pearled on her breasts. She had her Scots’

unsexed madness. I loved what others mocked:
the witch, the queen, the last highland gorgon.

the morbs

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I want more kisses. I was ten; glum, dim
child, full of shakes and flu-fevers. “Gain dull

wi’ th’ morbs,” you said, as you, my dear Grim
Grin Ghost, perched on my bed. They say feral

kids make feral ghosts. Perhaps. But you held
my hand, sang of Eynhallow the Prankster,

who slit you ear to ear. What you beheld
when you returned you told me in whisper,

in my fever. Spirits don’t keep secrets
from their lovers, not as the living do.

All I get are emojis and dearth. Ghost,
I don’t boast; I’m footnote to both spirits

and the living. Ghost, I want to kiss you.
I want your ruined, slit-slush lips the most.

NOTE:
The morbs is 1880s British slang for melancholia.

blue-fox acid

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All my sisters are feminists; all my
mothers gods. But, like in Recovery,

there are three passions that I still deny
I do: 1) Of the tricksters, that foxy

blue-fox acid drove all my low gnostic
thoughts. 2) Once cum was our libation;

now it’s sacrifice. 3) I was shaman
for you, infidel. Back when seraphic

truths felt down and dirty, I thought constant
carnal acts could free us, since chastity

was a curse. I was wrong both times, clearly.
Odd. These days there’s no talk of cock or cunt,

and though I have the blood of witch and nerd,
somehow, “lechery,” is just one more word.

what lasts

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I lost the graveyard today — Lilith’s tree,
Her owls and crossroads; all the souls and shades

I’d call on each night that would wait for me
because I loved them — are gone. For decades

I searched for connection to our dead kin;
though I’m not gifted with Sight, wasn’t born

to walk between worlds. Is a grudge a sin
when it’s over all that left you lovelorn

and lost? They came, tore down Her tree today,
smashed Her altar, stole my gifts. It’s what lasts

when Love is elsewhere. When Love is elsewhere
it’s what I need most. This isn’t dismay,

just a sign that Lilith still loves outcasts;
those of us who live on prayer and despair.

should’ve

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Three times, before I was one, something tried
to pull me back. When the San Gabriel

fault-line shook. When the firestorm and landslide
consumed the Malibu hills. When I fell

in the deep end at the Lil’ Angels Fun
Pool. Yes. There were other attempts, later,

but those were my failures. For eleven
short months in L.A. earth, fire and water

strove to claim me. Some curses get to hide
from us. Call it misfortune, my mom did.

Before I was her mistake she called me
her bad luck baby; one who should’ve died.

I’ve no memories of being that kid —
just what came after, what taught me to flee.

despite

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Gorged on hope you forget your place. Desire
won’t save you. If you’re the stuff of dreams then

you’re a safe flame for those afraid of fire
… a vague vulgarity. Who’d ever sin

on your behalf? There is no Orpheus
for you to sing you out of hell. Your place

is to warn others that all the lewdness
in the world feels most often like disgrace

and woe. Smut won’t save you. All this is true,
but I still give thanks for smut. I praise those

who’ve praised me with their libidos; who’ve taught
me lust sublime and passion’s true virtue …

I love that, despite all my griefs and woes,
despite feeling so broken and distraught.