A Month in Mouths of Forked Tongues

And when they from thy bosom pluck a flower,
Guard it, I pray thee, with a lurking adder,
Whose double tongue may with a mortal touch
Throw death upon thy sovereign’s enemies.
Mock not my senseless conjuration, lords.
This earth shall have a feeling, and these stones
Prove armèd soldiers[…]


With haste tonguing their taste off of you,
no longer hesitating, sickened from
waiting, manners worsened working for
unceasing, unseasoned hours taking

hold gripping with anticipation
my mouth’s fixation, forgive my truth’s
unforgiving craving by your
musk’s damask draping to be proven,

by your dusk of dark tendrils dripped through,
drenched ’til tomorrow dawns with that song
the scent of other men driven to
spill themselves and sweat their pits’ flavours

crescendos until innuendo
fails to undo damage words beg for,


nor ignore the scorch of my lips dew
sizzles against, for this fever few
can come to terms with is one better
once throbbing heads are licked, a slaking

of the sluice from which emerges floods
whose torrents of ivory some choose
to let ooze and others devour off
of you, as I do now, a quaking

taker of opportunities too
resolute in my thirst’s pursuit to
refuse taking in my throat’s deep flue
their smoke, chimneying in left over

residue of another dude’s rude
filth and your own mixed, your lovers’


by this transgressive alchemy glued,
ours a pleasure to repulse, transfix,
and render divisive all the more
opinions of us, two brutes basting

with translucent obscenities nude
flesh redolent conquests disabuse
of every myth, for where my breath
hits, your pores accept, gifts breathtaking

as getting wet whenever its blue
flame touches, at once cool and too much,
a dance of intensities imbues
with what else a month in mouths of forked

tongues encourages, imparts rescue
to loss, makes us believe metaphors.

1William Shakespeare, Richard II, Act 3, Scene 2, Lines 19–25, dialogue spoken by King Richard to Aumerle and Carlisle, in Richard II: Edited by Anthony B. Dawson and Paul Yachnin, published at New York by Oxford University Press in 2011; pages 206–207.