㱩浧⁳牣㴢⸮⽥潡杨汯杯㈮杩昢 ⁷楤瑨㴢㤹∠桥楧桴㴢㈶∠⼾

ISSUE  1   2   3   4   SUBMIT

The Suicides: Words & Blood
                after Inferno Canto 13


Susan Landers

Anchor of night—error—arrived—when we—a forest memento—sensed a sense
signature. The given path—marked not—green rebellion—color gloomy. Not frank—but
knotted—coppers. Shitty apple trees they were dried up—sheared skinny—singing the wrong
note. Yes. Sour ones. Yes. Breath stripped. Yes. Tart near fault. Thick descent. Fruit.


Between culture and culture ugly Harpies—knitted fannies—for nests make. Brutal honeycomb net.
All had wings in a broad sense and neck and faces girly. Articulate feet. (Taloned.) Feathery
bellies. They make complaint in strange trees.


The good master—pretty diva pure feet—entered. Know this second circuit—a ring. You will stay
here until you dive—you cheetah—into the dreadful sand. But consider well—if you can see—
guarded there—bent—the real thing—that torrent my sermon makes cozy
.


(Everyone’s psychological baggage filled up the small anxiety filled room.)


I felt—smelled—breath—trouble. I heard another—trapped—cologne—a person without face. So
smart it arrested me. I believed—yes—believed—so many voices—were those very same
branches. My useless voice—my cough—my mind must have slipped.


Master said—If you cut the trunk—truncate—whatever is fresh of these plants—whatever you
think—will be made—stumps
.


Sweet think munch. My man hands of little wars. I stretched my hand forward and plucked—
regret—complaint. (Like Dorothy.)


The trunk cried. Because I stabbed myself in the back? From that which made it then was now
blood. Why tear me up? Do not have you the spirit—of poor pity—have you—no—sense of
decency—sir? Men we were—come fuming or fat stooped—men—made trunks! Devout your
hands must be—if plunged into this core of locked serpents!



Green anger—he seethed. Decapitated—look then ooze. Venting for fear—yes—broken
splinters—at breakneck speed—creaks—unseemly. Words and blood.


I let the cutting fall.


And was like that. Dumbfounded.


And he—sage quick spirit—cut in to the branch with hand extended, saying:
You there—tell him—who you are—so that he may refresh your reputation.


The log hissed. Sweetcakes—you compel me in so far as you are likely to return. Write this down.
(There must be many to remember by now.)


I had perched—a little radiator—on top of he who holds—who keeps an eye on—the keys. I
fucked the ambient chair of my master’s heart. I turned the core of he who locked and unlocked.
Clenching and unclenching—so delicate. I cradled all his secrets. This was my error so suave.
Faith. I carried my pride to his glorious offices—ah his sun so pulsed—so many times—I lost
sleeps and wrists.


They called me Caesar’s whore. They said I turned his key.(Envy a common death in women.)
Inflamed minds flamed against me—all inflamed my flame the sun—and so from flames I fled to
flames—and made my just unjust.


By my roots—hair destiny—of this wood—I swear to you—never—did I break off faith—never did
my cheer fade—from my sir so worthy of honor mine. So if you from that world that turns
returns—repeat my faultlessness. You comfort this my memory—my souvenir. I lie down before
you—a culpable anchor—lying still—from the blow that envy struck me.



Little waits. Then master pressed on—Free this—please if you please—to say of like spirits—in
these stocks. Locked nut—tell us if you can—this night—at night—if some ever unfurl their limbs
.


Then leaves blew the strong log—and from that wind total voice converted. Short—breezy—I will
answer you. When that part of the spirit—ferocious wind—leaves. When the wild spirit—from the
body—itself—once the same—chooses leaves—free and easy. To this street—this boulevard—
Minos sends—to this seventh mouth—a cave. The self with no part not scolded—crashes into the
wild without choice except where fortune at the crossbow lands it.



(Dame Fortune. Dive maestro.)


From which it sprouts—a grain of spelt—quivering germs—surge vermin—become grain—into
plant—into mapped wood. And so the harpy—passing through—makes her foliage—feeds. Pain
into pain into breath.


Like the other empty ones who reckon—we will seek our spoils—come for our stripped bodies—
but none will cover us—none. Without justice no justice comes. So we will drag them here
instead. The messy spirit forest. Never a self—our body hangs—we ourselves—hang—our
molestations. Shade into shadow.



We were still to the log attended—(this log might never shut up)—when we were of—
something—surprised. Like he of bloody muck—the lousy destroyer on the lookout—hears
beasts—storming. Come two—from the left—naked and scratching—escaping—yes—strongly—
not meant for wood—at breakneck speed.


The one ahead cried—come—come running—come running death.


And the other—who seemed to be late too much—screamed in fashion. Yes—shrewd legs—go—
go merry-go-round.
And that one—missed. So of himself and a bush made a squall.


There was a forest flood—exactly a crowd—of black bitches—gross current—yearning
greyhounds long of chain—wrenched from him—the skulker—tooth—cog—piece by piece—his
regrettable limbs. And so washed him away.

My laurel grabbed my hand to take stock of the diminished bush—bleeding in vain such broken
laments: Why did your fire blame me? What good was I for protection?


Then teacher: Who were you—who from so many points huff and puff such a painful blood
sermon?



And he to us—Oh mind and soul so sewed together—see my torment—my rebellion. I was from
the fickle ditch—Florence—of the hung—such as I—I so hung—from my very own house
.