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ANNE HEDONIA & THE CATASTROPHE CANON

You will not always be a bathtub full of watered-down blood.


It is not written in the stars

(or anywhere else)

that you are doomed to be Lady Macbeth wringing her hands —

consider that maybe there’s a version of the story where it isn’t your job to scrub that damned spot out of the carpet.


A version where Romeo picks on someone his own size and Verona is as fair as the billboards off that stretch of backroad comin’ out of Mantua promise it is.


There is something to be said for a charge in the air and a chorus line of rocking chairs losing their minds.

A sky painted in India ink. Total abandon, ozone, fireflies.


It does not matter that we had to board up the windows,

nor that we will not be able to afford the repairs on the roof when the sun finally comes back home,

only that the rain is falling

like a ransom and the only thing we can pay

is our attention.


What I’m trying to tell you is that the dust settles if you give it enough time.

If you feed it and water it regularly.


I’m trying to tell you that there are better ways to reach heaven than hanging yourself with kite strings. Somewhere there is a version of you rising from a shallow grave of ichor and diatomaceous earth with ten wings, refusing to coat your grief in sugar to make it easier to swallow.


There is still a part of you that speaks God.


There is still a part of you that thinks you are important enough for the Moon to follow you home.

Somewhere

(in the not too distant future)

you live a life of enough

and do not walk among the gravestones

like an intern

trying to figure out what to do next.


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