Urgent and hawkish,
savage man strokes
skirr from your pen;
gouge the eye sockets
of decayed Frida Kahlo
bursting with flowers,
the Dance of the Dead.
You are the pen and paper
without pause or breath.
Thick lines glide from ink-sticks,
spiral ornamental corpses,
black and white, peppered
wet crimsons, blood-red licks, rushing
daffodil yellows, cool gray-blues
scraped from a sullied sky.
Lemon medieval hares
bare their intentions, one eviscerated
in clumsy, pseudo-lyrical lines,
flashing guts to hungry plucked eyes,
hurried, running out of time.
Finely etched skeletons dance
on ephemeral Styrofoam cups.
Bloody teeth gnaw tattooed sketches,
Max’s graphic prenotions.
Drunk Michigan Mermaids Sing to the Dead
I am calling you up from the dead
with my waning merdyke libido
come, come, my scaled tail flaps
up, out of the embers, can you hear me
crash off your mother’s meranti shelf
rise up ashen magpie from the shattered glass
and ascend the northwest wind
drift over the body Atlantic to the jagged
water-bound mitten, the rock is lit
your horny American merbitch sits here
calling you, a displaced witch
still snatched in grief’s teeth
sponged over death, memory
and love’s hunger
where ghosts’ romantic utterings
rumble over crumbled
dreams of earth’s dumb specters
stumbling clumsy through
last summer’s debris
and winter’s failed healings
while still pining for ghosts
to fuck them to new deaths
Koss is an artist and poet with over 170 writing and art publications in journals including Bending Genres, Gone Lawn, Cincinnati Review (micro), Variant Lit, Diode, and many others. Anthologies include Best Small Fictions 2021, Punk (Kissing Dynamite), Bending Genre’s Get Bent(’23), and Diode’s anthology (’23). They won the ‘21 Wergle Flomp Humor Award with “My Therapist Sez” and received BOTN nominations (’22 and ’23) for poetry and fiction. Find them at https://koss-works.com.