Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Right Tool for the Job

His elegant fingers reached for me. Behind him, the shadow of decaying wings, a bullshit trick; earth-bound angels can’t fly. No means of escape, I suffered his touch. His resultant smile set fire to places I wish I didn’t have. When I say you shouldn’t fuck with angels, I mean it.

“Just kill me,” I begged. “Whatever you want me to do, I’m gonna screw it up. Maybe on purpose. Your observers should’ve reported my predilections.”

“Indeed. I hope to see you indulge them all, and then some.”


His smile left me raw. “Because daughter, it will waken Lucifer.”



Marla stirred methodically, humming a lullaby familiar as my own name. I picked seeds from piles of pungent leaves, making a pyramid of possibility on splattered harvesting canvas. The kitchen smelled as it always had on brewing days: sweat, herbs, roses, and the stink of clarifying fat.

Marla sang with the same cadence as grandma had. Mama had skipped out on this part of her duty. On us, too.

I joined Marla, my fists filled with crushing green sweetness. “Told you Charlie Wright was good for something.”

“Bones woulda been optimal,” Marla said. “Still, it’s gonna be a fine gravy.”


Stitches for the bigger lines
vining pink now that the blossoms
have been washed off,
running brown down the drain to disappear
in streams of crusted lifesblood,
promising scars much deeper
than a knife could go.

Plasters over nicks and scrapes,
mere reminders of the feel –
his hands on my nape, hers on my back
where welts now fade
to mottled yellow with a purple center,
another flower for the flower of my youth
crushed callously under heel
because I would not.

They call me heretic
when my only sin
was hearing the voice
of a god not their own.

You Get What You Pay For

When the city came down, flight was not an option, literal or figurative. We were cut off from the world, our own forever changed, no idea who survived or where.

We weren’t taken down by the strife of nations fighting over god and territory – never asking approval from the people who suffered and died – nor a “rogue operative” with a dirty bomb.

We did it ourselves, too busy focusing on sucking all the resources from the earth to notice the cracks – in society, the ice, the flatlands.

Seas rising, land trembling, our only prayers now are for a merciful end.


Peggy and I were mismatched as a pair of girls could be, she willowy, me a human fireplug. Ignoring snickering boys, frowning biddies, suspicious parents, she was my world and I hers.

The penalty for what we planned was beyond reckoning, but we had to get away. The woods whispered of a different world. We’d heard of its horrors our whole lives.

Dauntless, we climbed the wall and found it all true. Woodland people are savage, ruthless, cunning. Fighting every step, we learned first how to live, then thrive.

Civilization is a false fa├žade for slavery. We will never return.