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C.N.P Poetry 

  • Writer's pictureCathexis Northwest Press

My Lover, the Songbird Who Was Swallowed by a Snake

By: Mikal Wix

Her pupils receded into distant stars,

pinpoints, divine and deep in their retreat—

and her skin seethed with sweet ice floes

under the influence of powders and secrets.

Her snorts rose and smeared small mirrors

with sickening piety,

her throat— an ocean trench full of ash vents,

her tongue— an ancient tube worm forked,

singing about all Hebrews and Romans who fall from grace.

Her gallows tree grew

from wan eggshells crushed and dreary—

no mere wood and rope would do;

the budding arch befit a monument

for her to rock beneath.

I knew she found a craving to fondle

and dissect unlike the other white particles

in clouds and fog, hail and snow,

but with a habitual burning twitch

when I heard her ritual sniff forsake her.

I felt her eyes surge and fade.

Incoherent fights and icy verdicts

flung under bedroom doors,

but the split tongues of the drug gang

supported her campaign,

even after the eviction came, and she ran away

to claim a random relation to fantasy, music, and fame.

Later, I stood apart at the show,

when she turned her friends away

from backstage before the curtain rose, her hands roared

like thin white horns over her head in a cocaine rage,

and she sneered

at my redoubled efforts to form a veneer.

“It was yours,” she hissed, “the baby I ditched.”

She turned away again to feed the cyst,

and cast off her flower crown

to the long and noisy lines of renown.


Mikal Wix was born in Miami, Florida, of green-thumbed, hydrophilic parents. Growing up in a diverse environment gave him the insight of the outcast. He attended several colleges, receiving a BA and an MA in literature and creative writing. When not collecting books, editing manuscripts, or chasing his chihuahuas around, he can be found in the Great Smoky Mountains fixing up an old ski chalet.


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