GUILLOTINE: By Marilyn Melissa Salguero


When I name my abuser, they write my accusation off as a witch hunt,
Said I was swept up in a false passion, a movement of school boy ideals,
Called me unpredictable, a violent thing,
Said “Honest men are not safe with her around”
They all gathered in crowds to protect him & shielded him with their blind allegiance.

Who am I to call the king a pauper?
After all, didn’t he make me what I am?
Used his platform to build me into an icon,
What a heartless iron maiden I am,
A loud and lying thing.

Well if I am to be made into an symbol of a revolt gone wrong
then let me be the femme fatale
La guillotine.

Fierce & Unforgiving,
A pointed piece of work.
I was built to provide a gentler end to things,
Something to soften the blows,
something that sat so pretty & looked best when splattered with crimson,
I offered peace of mind in the form of a severance pay,
Lost my mind along with every waiting and bowed head.

I was an offer of humanity until it was taken from me,
Until my body was used to satisfy
his bloodlust, until his hands stripped me of all things human and left me splintered,
A submissive & quiet thing.

How easily am I blamed for the all bodies.

& Isn’t it the history of woman to be vilified for her search of justice?
To be blamed for the blood on her hands
But never once asked who made her a widow?

So if I am to be remembered as the scaffolding,
Let me also be remembered as the blade,
All sharp edges and unforgiving swiftness,
Let me be the “fallen woman”.

The one who drags every man down with her,
Watch as I takes his name and claim it as a war cry,
become both hero and executioner,
Call me maneater as I leave him as nothing more than bones,

Let justice be my legacy.

And when you tell my history,
Let my truth be a mirror,
Tell them how kings, kavanaugh’s, and criminals all trembled the same way,
all looked the same in the light of my reflection, no splitting hairs between them
Tell them that I was
Cold and piercing,
And exact.

And remember,
How the crown of every king splits apart so easily
And how they all run red

By Marilyn Melissa Salguero


Marilyn Melissa Salguero (she/her/hers) is a Guatemalan poet who puts the SALT in Salt Lake City, Utah. She is the human equivalent of red wine, crushed velvet and using humor as a poor coping mechanism. Melissa her work centers on her life, relationships, and identity. She has been featured on Write About Now Poetry and Ink & Nebula. She was a member of the Westminster 2018 & 2019 CUPSI team and was a finalist at the 2018 Utah Arts Festival Indie Slam. When not yelling about white boys or making God metaphors, Melissa can be found feeding her online shopping addiction, blasting Gloria Trevi, or living up to her title as the quintessential “bitter ex girlfriend poet”. Her work (along with her emotional overflow) can be found on twitter @_Miss_Marilyn.

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