a hymn for the deities of drag and decay By Beth Swanson

a hymn for the deities of drag and decay

I will pour a libation to the gods of this city
long hair and the colour blue, traces of glitter across lips
and cheeks / hollow bones for hallowed nights

I will feed them rosé spiked with gin,
pour honey across their hands

everything they touch, now, a reminder
of that which cannot be washed off

what began as sugar became corruption
heaven has been soured by the fire
hot-sweet / bitter pain

so easy to ignore when the alternative
is to crack apart a rib and observe

the decay

I, the worshipper, come to this monument
holding my mirror to the sun, reflective

I can see him shaking from here, the way it feels
to be under the purple, blind, gasping and holy

prayers falling on deafened ears

at the end of this revelation
I don’t have the sweetness to call down the wrath
of the heavens

the sharper deities
the ones whose songs are hungry vengeance
I would offer them my marrow

the gods decline
they want the honey / sugar / sweet taste
of complicity

By Beth Swanson


Beth Swanson is a writer based in Wellington, New Zealand. She enjoys walking by the water, daydreaming, and writing about feelings too big to be contained. She has previously been published in Rose Quartz Journal and can be found on twitter @bethrswanson.

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