i won best dressed at my high school prom
but that didn’t stop me from going to the graveyard
afterwards, moon-lit and awkward with my best friend.
my white dress, a beacon of idiotic rococo, a satin pouffe.
under our fingernails
aeons of moss, from trying to scrape the graves clean
with our hands.
what bold young gravediggers we must have looked.
i’ve been known as a scream queen. the last girl
bloodstruck and uncaring, eyes wide on the dancefloor
hexes in her rhythm. bloody-mouthed, silage-sticky
unafraid in the unmoving hallways.
last girl to kiss, to drink, to bed.
still, didn’t i love her, in that psycho-killer way?
even if the kiss was a bite ‒
i watch slashers in the dark, no popcorn. i try
to see where it all went haywire, and how
i can stitch my sinew back together in a suit of skin.
if love is an 80’s horror, i am covering my eyes at every scene
i am shrieking at every synth stab in the soundtrack.
a thorn with any other teeth would still
bite: like a knife to pavement, flint sparking
like an axe to a renaissance painting
a landscape split into flutters of oil