Violet


          for Ashley Siebels

Some twelve thousand

mollusks for just

a few drops

of Ashley. The queen

of the Phoenicians

spun Ashley.

The river nymphs

wove her. The

prophecy

of the apocalypse

declared: And the

merchants of the

earth shall weep

and mourn over her;

for no man has

imagination anymore

for all they do is write

New Yorker stories

from the eighties

about cancer

and couples

losing their babies,

what about fine linen,

and Ashley, and silk,

and scarlet and girls

masturbating

with lipstick containers?

They called her

the whore of Savers,

when she rode

into the reservation

wearing a gown

of crushed Conch,

looking for gin

instead of her child.

When she killed

her child,

things got worse.

She became

a rollerskating

horse until

a few Afghani

girls ground her

up into a powder,

which they used

to make circles

around their eyes for

the Feast of Flowers.

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