Lily Holloway

the bluebeard

shattered bloody mary statuettes

        through the keyhole shining blue

magpie can taste the shattering on her tongue

        crunching between back molars

    chipping off enamel

magpie pries open shower drain         and pulls out

    lengths of foreign         hair


magpie finds drawers full of unleavables




    eves pandoras psyches questionably departed

ribs squeak against     each     other        when         closed

it beckons from the end of a long hallway

a vein with no pumping        no airflow

the porcelain key betrays shatters sending splinters into clenched bloodless hands when forbidden opens to:

    pulsating bloody clotted cream

    spilling from ripped arm sockets

    intestines tumbling and

    lidless eyes

emaciated stomach breathing pustular cysts on the concrete floor

    mathematical instruments as teeth

at the end of the room

is an office door

supermarket lighting



from the shades

it smells like chlorine and blood

This poem was originally published in NZPS’ ‘a fine line’ as a response to the theme, Key.

Republished by Lily on 02 May 2020.