Cory's blond hair
of Christmas card angels.
He spits Big Red gum
into a pile of orange-brown
past eighties-constructed neighborhoods,
behind fence lines.
of burning cedar
He lifts his shirt
to wipe away sweat,
is an angry
on his pale,
His voice feels
like brown sugar-
this puff of breath lingers
like a speech bubble:
in their own ways.
As we turn
down the pine-needled path,
I tell him,
I don't want to be
Four tin elephants never brought
prosperity. The west accosted by metal
corners from sink, stove, broken oven, microwave. Pa qua mirror
the door. East lacking water, unless you count the toilet that doesn't
flush. Dragon bells rusted silent hang by red silk over my window.
Accumulation of used needles, plastic wrappers. Imperial Garden
molds in white boxes with red characters that offer luck and happiness.
and silver coins I collected, hid under a loose floorboard, have
sold. Wood planks are nailed over windows in the north. Joe asks,
rather stare at the brick wall?"
Hate Mail from the Grave
Soul, knowing your damnation, move to Hell.
Dark, empowering energy that led
you to commit suicide and child's dread
lamp cord death leaves residue like smeared mel.
You mocked God, Adeleine. Farewell,
I am John's wife now by state and Godhead.
Reverend Latienne, who made us newlyweds,
knows rituals that will purge like calomel.
Once used for Vatican emergency:
wailing, dancing in catacombs beneath
bones of buried children began to gypsy
when nuns blessed too many with monteith-ed
glasses, and lying priests raped them tipsy
of their earthly possessions, except grief.
 Pure form of honey.  Purgative powder.
 Bowl for cooling wine glasses.
Michelle Martinez is from Spring, TX and is currently attending
Sam Houston State University for M.A. in English. Plum Ruby Review
is her first publication.