To a Femme Fatale Diva Queen

—after Djuna Barnes

A THOUSAND words had smitten her 
       Into this thing;
Life had taken her and given me
        A nice little zing.

She came with laughter wide and calm;
        And splendid grace;
I looked between the lines and saw
        Femme fatale disgrace.

And found my life detoured wide
        Between muse and wine. 
I ceased to search, and growing wise
        She became mine.

Yet some wondrous thing within the mess
        Was held in check— 
Was missing as she groped and clung
        About my neck.

My master chord she could play
        Losing me by the keys, 
Yet she hinted of it as she fucked
        Between my knees.

She watched me come with subtle fire 
        And wiggling feet,
Crumbling like some lustful drunk
        Yet somehow sweet.

She saw the crimson leave my cheeks 
        Rings around my eyes;
For when a woman lives in awful haste
        Surely a man dies.

The books that lit my hours by night
        And made them gay, 
Soiled my sweet and ignorant soul
        And fouled its play.

Barriers and heart both broken—lust
        Beneath her feet. 
I’d cum forty times and she sneer
        Go out in the street.

A thousand times wasn’t enough
        To make it last;
Till the ruined crimson of my lips
        Grew vague and vast.

Until her femme fatale soul came
        At last to kill;
I paid the price and wondered why
        I needed her still.

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