bitters and rye

I was the sandcastle dream you built by the bay
brackish little Betty, jetty mouth
spewing toward the only cloud in August
Savannah sazerac, lemon rinds
your slant rhymes
your question-marked pain:
it’s just a stinging in your neck.
by morning,
they’ll be scraping you off the streets.

moon girl

high arched
shave off your eyebrows

and go home-
there is no shield that can save you from

you are silver tongued
bearer of your own blade,
impaled on every glowing halo
circling back through you-

do not hide your dark, your scales
do not chimney sweep your soot
spread it over, until everything is grey-

you will always be a storm
no matter where you touch down.

a thousand thousand bonfires
and wax-dripping naked rituals
are but lighthouses,

your brown bay windows
calling to the sea once more-
it has always claimed what it is owed.


indigo child, son of the morning
Apollonian smile with a fear of mortal friction, reel me in before I splinter off this dock-
(pull me close, kiss me hard)
heureux, heureux à en mourir
golden archerfish, shoot me down from this Dionysian
dangle before my lips lift-off,
I’m looking for water on Mars-
walk me home
your wings, favrile, ingrained iridescence
hum with mine, Tiffany-stained,
blueing all your ambient light.

alouette, gentille alouette, I will pluck you,
little opalescent time traveler,
turn you to cicada songs wrapped
around a Southern Victorian, slide
fingers across wallpaper palms, read
your eternal vines
(you are everything, everything)
la lumière de toutes les lumières
glide mercurial across
hardwood, and tile
I, the revenant shade in your euphoric art,
double irises judge me the continuum-

(I think) I love you,
tu me manques
you, the place I was meant to find again-
sunken, bone deep
marrow and oxygen-
you pattern me no paper doll, just suited to my skin
bellflowered and swaybacked-
flow immensely cheek to cheek,
sapphire surround
tailored tongue favorite couturier

Lora Robinson is a poet and technical writer based in Baltimore, MD. Her poetry has been previously published in Scarab and DREICH Magazine, and her first poetry collection will be released in spring/summer 2021 with akinoga press.