Shameless Grace

                                        i. Bump

                    It was one of those
honeymoon periods, the kind
                    where blood runs instead
of love, no one coming because
                    that bruised-knee banshee,
Autumn, she followed Summer down
                    Sunset, her bottled-
watered haste leaked, making appear

                    purer their impure
chase, sullen faces changing shape
                    as she made off with
matrimony’s white memory,
                    knife committing to

wide-eyed obscenity a rough
                    cut of wedding night
revelry her seasoned grip sliced,
                    breath of ice wrapping
it up, a kind of smut dusk’s bride
                    trusts will never see
daylight, sick shit dead stars themselves
                    scoff at, blushing off

and burning out at the thought that
                    what was shot makes screams
seem like sighs, fisting timid touch
                    in comparison,
the guy in her bedroom the type

                    who thinks it unkind
to hide behind inhibitions,
                    whispering, ‘Tonight,
please?’, ‘Babe, why can’t we?’
he said when
                    she scarred his soft mind,
her thighs awash with tights networks
                    fight over, blurring
the tawdry part where fish and lips

                    meet, the cheap oyster
platter that keeps wet what she keeps
                    intact, holding back
from her husband and audience
                    a stash of treasured

fantasies she re-enacts for
                    a quantity of
antiquity that defies all
                    measure, those ancient
attempts at pure pleasure revived
                    whenever Autumn
follows Summer down Sunset, her
                    plastic Evian

                                        ii. Grind

bottled-watered haste making it
                    appear purer, their
impure chase a race of unchained
                    minds, wild brides trying
hard with midnight gait to saunter
                    over stars whose lights
give way as their names give away
                    their plight, that time they

fought against time and each other,
worth all the bother if, for just
                    one more month, each wife
could put off her man’s touch, true love

                    better when taken
in the mouth, tongues tasting of blood
                    what gets them off, two
sisters cycling through dry seasons,
                    each of them trying
to outrun overdone clichés
                    deceiving women,
becoming enemies, not friends,

                    how quickly pain tames
what in them makes of young ladies
                    something sinister,
since Summer used to dance under
                    the name Vivica

St. James, an esteemed exotic
                    entertainer who
once owned the floor at Heaven’s Door,
                    that depraved place where
Shameless Grace showed her the way, how
                    to work it out like
a bitch, make it like a mistress,
                    hustle tips, and take

no shit, teaching her the secret
                    of making a sweet
killing without regret, and yet
                    when they met, instead
of resisting its itch, they kissed,

                    topless assassins
throwing to West Hollywood’s pink
                    wind, their caution and
their tits, fingering misfortune
                    as they toed its edge,
speaking off-book in silence their
                    sin’s desire ad-libbed,
some nights Eve’s curse more like a gift.