A Girl Named Absinthe


Her name was Absinthe it

Was not the name her parents

Had given but a name adopted

The embodiment of an abstraction

The embodiment of an intrinsic

Stupor for which she was made

By circumstance to live

She lived by herself in

That part of the city that

Accommodates addicts

And exiles, suspended

From the telephone wires

Even when waking she

Found no respite from

Her nightmares. Her

Condition was not

To be envied, terminal

In its impulses, everything

She touched was subject

To premature expiration


Sean was one of many men

Attracted to her blatant

Sexuality and her disregard

For cultural orthodoxy,

A true anarchist, a kindred

Spirit but hers was not

An extrinsic rebellion, she

Was not politically aware

She was outside certainly

But not purposefully, rather

Than the muse he’d supposed

She was a barrier manifest


She sat on the floor hundreds

Of photographs torn at the

Seams, the tremulous light of

Two bodies not quite touching

Soon surgically divided by

The same shears that had claimed

Her hair, as vibrant as dragon’s

Breath. She’d loved Sean as the

Others with every cell in her

Body with every ounce of

Blood in theirs but he hadn’t

Understood her, didn’t see

The desaturation of the dusk

As a ritual death, didn’t

Feel the agony of the sunsets

And the necromantic rise

Of ash as the spirit world

Awakened, he didn’t see

The way the light moved

Before her eyes like writhing

Serpents or hear the coyote’s

Forlorn wail from beneath

The floor boards, he didn’t

See the murder of crows

Passing through the walls

Screeching cryptic messages

From pagan gods as they ate

Stale noodles from dirty mugs

No Sean did not understand her

And as she sat there in her pajamas

Midday melting his face into

Candlelight she chanted, certain

That he would feel the heat of

Her rabid and unwashed scorn


This is my attempt at a submission for We Write Poems