her castigation leaves me just short . . .
just short of humanity, manhood, sentience,
and suddenly the comfortable cushion
that is night and darkness overwhelm with
gnashing black dagger-teeth in sinister
swamps of oblivion falling into drugged dream
where my soul is flayed apart by biblical
monstrosities and Dantéesque demons
with barbed whips and broken-glass palms striking
and stroking, claws tearing . . . ‘til morning breaks
into birdsong outside the open bedroom
window. those birds try to encourage, but
these wounds seep shadow so deep in the fissures
of my brain and heart that I see only flames . . .
David M Pitchford
29 March 2012