matthew kinlin — death opens its violet eye
Gran Dio!... Morir sì giovane.
(Great God!... To die so young.)
The eye is an extension of the brain, you said, and showed me photographs of yourself in fishnet stockings. You’ve always been a selfish girl. You took me to the catacombs beneath the opera house and pulled down my skirt. You said your husband would stay until the third act because he was a sadist and always waited for Violetta to choke to death.
Tutto è follia nel mondo ciò che non è piacer.
(Everything in life is folly, except for pleasure.)
I was going blind but knew you well enough from the smell of your clothes. I breathed the air in deeply from your mouth like a dog. The sickness makes me cruel. I scream horrible words in your face. I ridicule and scorn. And afterwards, of course, it’s too late. I yell until I am turquoise. It’s like being locked inside a cage with a thousand magpies.
A stringervi qual figlia vengo al seno. O generosa!
(I have come to embrace you as a daughter. O generous woman!)
When we make love now, I think only of suicide. It feels so beautiful, like pushing a paper boat across a silver lake. They will fill my veins with formaldehyde. I’m becoming a cigarette, you once joked, in the bar. My skin is yellow like an autumn leaf in the sunlight. When you start to orgasm, the sadness shivers through us both.
Se consultiam le stelle null'avvi a noi d'oscuro.
(When we call upon the stars, nothing is hidden from us.)
Do you love to be my nursemaid? You store a box of lavender by the bed to keep away the smell. Your husband at the opera again, watching another victim suffer. I reach out towards your face. A dark reflection in the windowpane. A comet falls across a blank eyeball. I scratch your cheek until the warm blood runs. I want to drag you down with me.
MATTHEW KINLIN lives and writes in Glasgow. His two novels Teenage Hallucination (Orbis Tertius Press) and Curse Red, Curse Blue, Curse Green (Sweat Drenched Press) were released in 2021. His novella The Glass Abattoir (D.F.L. Lit) was released this month and his first collection of poetry Songs of Xanthina (Broken Sleep Books) is to be released in April.