The Printer’s Devil Marked Me for an Author

See the end begin
when envy walks in,
strutting—’spits secrets
since she can’t keep them—
that’s when I see this
moment, wide opened
to receive me, sin’s

for sadist factions—
closest to heaven
I tell you—so let’s
not fall, but we’ll run
on down into what’s
often soft-spoken
as if it’s fiction.

Come, let’s just go in,
no inhibition—
let’s just let greet us
that performance sent
up from hell to us,
moaning like women
saying, It isn’t

so bad going down
to have it taken—
portraits paint artists
more than sitters when
their patron is such
a trickster; Satan
himself commissioned

this one of us drawn
in a poet’s hand—

obscene, lecherous,
seething, decadent—
the picture’s tasteless
and wet, words tasting
like filth; colours thrown

out of mouths poison
itself can’t ruin,
as if those poets
have truant tongues meant
to pen spoil on us,
moulding us to an
ideal death even

virgin innocence
can’t escape, not since
something so tame as
blankest page became
Devil’s accomplice,
rhyme advocating
for ev’ry craving—

sweet, late, deviant—
developed to paint
flesh’s fresh canvas
in pain; laying on
cold clay, hands that crush
and caress, shaping
what isn’t human.