in the middle of a shower,

putting on shoes,

pouring the tea the anger begins, 

like an undertow, pulls down

into lightless flows where covert creatures feed, cold

roils blood, moon tides lost. In no time,

rage swells from belly to throat, chokes

like stuck toast.


But the automatic swallow forces all things down,

down, down again

into those secret places where darkness thrives

without consent.

Storms batter inner edges, form

wedges of hopelessness,

press heavy weight upon weight, heaved curses,

livid, so strangled,

up the spine

to lodge inside the skull, beat out blame

against eye, temple, cheek, until echoes,  


whine the ears to plead for silence,

pounding out red rhythm,

the boot against the heart,

the thud: alone alone alone.  


Through mind, memory, muscle, bone,

lashings long ago, now

neatly forced into the subtlety of breath itself,

forgotten, never gone, all

colliding, screaming

for first place, hard grip, clench

at stomach, womb, heart, lungs,

tombs of ache,

buried, but never dead.

Specters, shrill sisters, these

vampires chew forever,  

wrack then fill

into hovels of despairing cells endless,


endless tearing.


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Copyright 2007 Susan M. Botich