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POETRY: The Nymph with the Lovely Braids


The minute details of the moment emblazon on his skin

As even the supple touch of a hand can leave one stranded

To fend for one’s self, a plant derived lipstick kiss

From a Greek or Persian muse landed squarely on his neck

Causing him to falter under his own lack of strength

Bending him quite in half, the top of him tipped directly forward

Into the yellow light of morning as his legs stand back

Into murderous night where small knives can puncture his skin,

Taking him in a localized fierceness that opens his lipstick laced neck

Into the dirty air of a skinny ghetto alleyway leading only to decrepitude and rot,

Causing even the lightness of life to grab the short knife in its own defense,

Seeking the victory that could very well be some other man’s,

Not his at all, and in this muse laced moment, the minute details of his life

Flung out on the butcher block before him leaves him excited

Gasping for the dirty bombed out decrepit ghetto air in a solemn and isolated climax.

Soon the air will bind him, stand him tall and walk him into the arms of Death

As men before him have also called on the distrusted virtues of deceitful stench

Dragging them like this man into oblivion before they could even race against it

Devastated like the bombed out subway tunnels of a world war era land

Where families sought protection from the air raids and missile sights,

Bombed out like so many lives stacked one atop another in piles

Of famished death.            In his vision, he entrusts all future to the memory

Of all things past, his entire family shot before him in the streets of an Eastern Bloc

In front of the bombed out cold war architect’s visions of the perfect utilitarian,

Utopian city once scrambling for identity in a modern world where forty years on

The West would dictate to tear down the walls so the destitute could see its wonders

So that twenty years later than that declaration, women could be sold like livestock

For the benefit of a twisted sense of capitalism where even the drugged,

Enslaved, cash crop of a nation could be whisked halfway around the world

To become any man’s dirty little whore as even these men hear no voices from their muse,

Indeed they had killed their muses at the first note of song

Carrying the bodies into the slums of small knife fugitives,

With the sex trade laborer shot full of a hundredth hit of junk.

Walking these streets in the full light of day, in fashionable suits,

Are the same men who by night visit the curtained drug hazed rooms

With the gunman standing in the hall observing any muse-less man

Seeking a senseless, baseless orgasm of power, greed, and frenzy

By making what no one could call love to the doped up woman

Who is half in and out of her underwear and consciousness.

Like his muse, the woman could very well be dead without his knowing,

He could very well be fondling a corpse of plain anonymity

As even when the call of love had come, he could only think of his murdered family

And then his dead bride and son, thinking now that his life, the whole of it,

Is literally this hopeless, that humanity and any regard therein,

Does not in fact exist as all of his pleasures now come from pain,

As all wars want desperately to enlist the masochists in the survivors

Causing two souls a thousand miles away

To become as close to obliteration as they can come,

This man living with the eminent hope that he will never be as weak

As the faceless woman he is tonight ravaging

Far from the dirty industrial and spent bomb air of his murdered homeland

Where women too were raped, children killed or enlisted by more powerful men,

Many dying before turning eighteen years of age

Until an entire country is soon bred on Death’s depravity.

With little hope for the freedom called out by the West but by cash to the crooked

Many now involved in international trade with pimps who coerce and sell

The remains of any feminine life or living from the streets of the Eastern Bloc

Kidnapped, brought to perform in an eviscerated sexual paradise

Of a dim lit flat or windowless storefront where flesh becomes a commodity

as dark as will be allowed.

Even the woman’s kid brother, who is dying of cancer, will live to see another day

As this is the family’s only way to pay his bills.

Yet, he will die anyway, with his oldest sister far from home,

Drugged up and losing her soul beneath so many men,

Forced to give it to them for mere pocket change

Until there is little left but the man who has ravaged her.

He is confident in his path as soon he too, will die,

And not even history will pay him any mind

As he had cut and carved his muse with his small knife those many years ago,

After his entire family had died its murderous death with the same regard for humanity

He now has emblazoned on his neck in the form of a Death Wish Kiss.

-Rob Borges, 2010

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