Not All Poems Are Love Poems

by Frankie Mace


( I have lived within your absence )

the negative pressure of your breathing a medical ventilator

expanding the shame that lurches in the cavity

                                                          then exhaled forcefully at your name.

You have killed me in your sleep ------------

Vengefully you amputated

                                                         // the terminal infection //

that I am to you.


The knowledge of my destruction is dizzying:::

Expensive bombs raining     a future        a famine     a fallout.

To destroy unutterably is a fresh power

a cave full of bones, thrilling in its horror –

only debris lives longer that death.

Don’t use the word forever

luckless wreck, Medea.


The magnitude of your devotion threatens,

bruises darkly, flowering its juices.

Your shadow in an image ¦ egami na ni wodahs ruoY

I may only pale and wane

clammy as the moon on an old plate

… Surrounded by the imagined company of the dead …

That is but is not history

I have things to say that are unemailable.


You with your souks, your Maroc skies

blameless as a porcelain saint – Hero 


wrenched from her Leander.

Memory has perfected for you a martyr

an old rug torn for a love of the same hook



                        as it 



leaving a floor shadow the texture of echo

/ echo of texture the shadow floor a leaving.


Shiver out of your skin, ( I will wear it )

the psychic cloak of it unique in its


remoteness and intimacy.


For then I was Circe, temptress

[Treacherous in the dark]

rival on a foreign isle

where < need springs > from desire

and claims manhood like a trophy.

Whispered dissent a poison--------delivered on a tooth

Fawned over by       drugged   victims  of a  simple magic 

Which turns them all to swine.


And yet, living in the half-light of unknowing

will soon be mine to inhabit.

From the edge it drrrrrrrrrrrrrrifts to the centre in @n eternal return:


I have become Penelope now


and will clean the cups and fluff the pillows,

facilitate in waves of succour

[Loving fearfully in the shadows]

To adorn a *fresh fantasy* with honey

As a patient handmaiden at a loom;;;

Prepares a new rug.