Self-Immolation Means I Love You

by Vanessa Willoughby

A reptilian woman shrouded in designer scales always serves
as muse for rice-paper-thin ghost stories.
Wrap your tongue around throat-shredding
Syllables as heavy as cocaine bricks
Let me know, my darling, godly Dear
When you want me to walk in front of the leash
and I will ingest your white fury as martial law.

You know Duke, you know Jeep’s Blues
Can set fire to our playhouse and
Turn the mattress into a last will
and summer testament.
You know Duke, you know Jeep’s Blues
Can turn my wrists into blood diamonds.

Hold the water above my head
While you call me Queen of Sheba
I’ve slept with Solomons who sway like brown beer bottles in metronome waves
when Faustus examines their gangrene hearts

Vanessa Willoughby is a graduate of Emerson College and The New School. Her work has been featured on The Toast, The Hairpin, Electric Cereal, The Nervous Breakdown, Thought Catalog, Words Dance, and The Huffington Post.

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