moon cherries


Moon Cherries
Wanda Coleman


smudged fingerprints

cheap water-based paint, lust ten layers
over and over the walls speak
voices clear and without accent tell me
what one so-called friend kept secret
a terrible penalty will be paid for trust
(o and to think i brought it into the
who was the Hecuba who believed good
could rule out genetic predisposition
and nullify cradle-to-grave social abuse?
who was the Hecuba who could



midnights bring on poisoned sleep
spells for success fail
and a wedding day bodes an abiding and
relentless bleeding. downfall will
come with the muted cries of lock-key
his pleasure restricted to the pursuit of
his dope-fed illusions & her deluded
that not only can she overcome adversity,
but bad advice and the jealousy of knaves.
their journey is a shock-ridden careen
through a wasteland of slashed wrists,
amphetamines and unscratchable itches.
their deep-Hollywood story will
come to its predictable ending: the rape of
beauty, a secret bludgeoning, the
death of an angel



but when this grim heart
slips into its grimmer past of
terror shame rage
where broken dreamless nights
are interred, there is no relief
in pretense. fantasy is an affront.
ordinariness was wanted yet denied. what
was never learned in time proved the
undoing. mind be still. the crack-up
intensifies these recollections,
resurrects the flood of a bitter spring

you know it’s your fault you
kept doing it when you should’ve
stopped. you squandered irretrievable
bliss. you. the reason of you the
mirror says you, the highball glass
you, your face floats up from the ash and
smoke at the end of this cigarette.
the clock spun backwards around you.
behind the closed door out you stepped.
under the merciless light you were
these are the dark currents in which
you do the butterfly stroke upstream. you. so
rude & tender & strong. you are a
no, a watcher, no, a warden. you are what
so dearly paid for. you are the gas pedal
to the floor. your beauty is a maker of
myths. on your tongue piss turns to milk

you devastate me



do not remember. forget

a dream among objects

outside that closed door of
the rosewashed room, framed
against the doorway, a Queen Anne’s
the sitter waits in shadow

we did not meet. there was
no entanglement of tongues
i did not experience love
race did matter
and my hymen did not break
you were unconcerned about impressing
anyone, least of all my parents
our stars did not cross
there is nothing to the past

forget my name

Photo by Immo Wegmann on Unsplash