Death in love

October 10, 2019

Life is so beautiful that death has fallen in love with it, a jealous, possessive love that grabs at what it can.

Yann Martel
Life of Pi

The story of torment itself

September 21, 2019

For us, eating and being eaten belong to the terrible secret of love. We love only the person we can eat. The person we hate we ‘can’t swallow.’ That one makes us vomit. Even our friends are inedible. If we were asked to dig into our friend’s flesh we would be disgusted. The person we love we dream only of eating. That is, we slide down that razor’s edge of ambivalence. The story of torment itself is a very beautiful one. Because loving is wanting and being able to eat up and yet to stop at the boundary. And there, at the tiniest beat between springing and stopping, in rushes fear. The spring is already in mid-air. The heart stops. The heart takes off again. Everything in love is oriented towards this absorption. At the same time real love is a don’t-touch, yet still an almost-touching. Tact itself: a phantom touching. Eat me up, my love, or else I’m going to eat you up. Fear of eating, fear of the edible, fear on the part of the one of them who feels loved, desired, who wants to be loved, desired, who desires to be desired, who knows there is no greater proof of love than the other’s appetite, who is dying to be eaten up, who says or doesn’t say, but who signifies: I beg you, eat me up. Want me down to the marrow. And yet manage it so as to keep me alive. But I often turn about or compromise, because I know that you won’t eat me up, in the end, and I urge you: bite me. Sign my death with your teeth.

Helene Cixous
The Love of the Wolf

Two creatures fly silent between the still stones;
heads back, eyes wide, hooves touching down madly, surely,
swifter than the wind or death, who hunts them,
tail twitching, nose to the earth.

Kathryn Atwood

I Feel Drunk All The Time

September 14, 2019

Jesus it’s beautiful!
Great mother of big apples it is a pretty
You’re a bastard Mr. Death
And I wish you didn’t have no look-in here.
I don’t know how the rest of you feel,
But I feel drunk all the time
And I wish to hell we didn’t have to die.
O you’re a merry bastard Mr. Death
And I wish you didn’t have no hand in this game
Because it’s too damn beautiful for anybody to die.

Kenneth Patchen

your naked body

August 27, 2019

I like to think of you naked.
I put your naked body
Between myself alone and death.

Kenneth Rexrothe
Between Myself and Death

Encounter with darkness

August 17, 2019

“Who are you?“

“I am Death,” said the creature. “I thought that was obvious.”

“But you’re so small!”

“Only because you are small. You are young and far from your Death, September, so I seem as anything would seem if you saw it from a long way off-very small, very harmless. But I am always closer than I appear. As you grow, I shall grow with you, until at the end, I shall loom huge and dark over your bed, and you will shut your eyes so as not to see me.”

Catherynne M. Valente
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

Coins for a Funeral

August 17, 2019

a new zephyr
breathing fire upon lilies until they melt
waxed by a violence for fast paced consideration
falling as pearls back to the seabed
invisible now, as once I was
strewn in savage arms for slaughter
a silver piece in my mouth
hard to bite, sucking on metal
worth less than me, more than life
blooming on the cusp of circular bonfires
lighting the skies with sordid memory
hands pulling me under water
where static weeds grow lithe fingers
entering me in green vision
letting go of the borders and they blurred
like glasses crushed into diamonds
where the moon winks heavily at transgression
and joins the circles compounding begotten earth
do the leaves that unfurl like dancers
know the name of silence’s child as well?
silence that hangs in arabesque
painted stiff and yoked
my dress a bloody reminder
of all things spilt
all things best remedied
beneath this buried attempt.

Candice Daquin

When it happened

August 9, 2019

It could be a little rectangle of sunlight
sitting on the windowsill at dawn
preserved for as long as the earth
sits still and for what reason
but for any number of reasons
it could be a wren in the branches
turning its head toward the shadow
of light at the woman who sits
slumped in a chair, dead.

It could be the inner coherence of nature
when a breeze kicks over
knocking the screen door open then shut
or the instinct of a neighbour who stops by
for coffee and a cigarette, it could be
the soul’s animosity that complicates
the balance of things, loosening the breeze,
throwing the curtain open, creating consequences.
It could be terror announcing itself.
It could be anything.

There is no way of knowing.

Lisa Zaran


After every war
someone has to clean up.
Things won’t
straighten themselves up, after all.

Someone has to push the rubble
to the sides of the road,
so the corpse-laden wagons
can pass.

Someone has to get mired
in scum and ashes,
sofa springs,
splintered glass,
and bloody rags.

Someone must drag in a girder
to prop up a wall,
Someone must glaze a window,
rehang a door.

Photogenic it’s not,
and takes years.
All the cameras have left
for another war.

Again we’ll need bridges
and new railway stations.
Sleeves will go ragged
from rolling them up.

Someone, broom in hand,
still recalls how it was.
Someone listens
and nods with unsevered head.
Yet others milling about
already find it dull.

From behind the bush
sometimes someone still unearths
rust-eaten arguments
and carries them to the garbage pile.

Those who knew
what was going on here
must give way to
those who know little.
And less than little.
And finally as little as nothing.

In the grass which has overgrown
reasons and causes,
someone must be stretched out
blade of grass in his mouth
gazing at the clouds.

Wislawa Szymborska

Send in the Clowns

July 29, 2019

A girl of ten years is standing with her father’s gun in her hand. It is her birthday. The living room is in a fine house with views over the Hudson river. Her father, an architect, has arranged for a pair of clowns this afternoon to entertain his daughter on her birthday. But she hates clowns. The voices in her head tell her they’re just dirty old men in makeup who want to touch her and her two sisters in a nasty way. So she takes her father’s gun from a drawer and shoots both of them dead after feeling the half-tumescent penis of one of them in his baggy clown trousers.