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the memory This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

And so the hollowed head rose
from the moist and clayey soil
of the sepulchral grounds where
tales and memories are buried,
and hidden away under soothing
marble and symbols of fear and
hope and all such foolish things:
rising with its interspersed gilded
and decalcified teeth, the holes
whistling the songs that flew out on
silent, unflapping wings through the
cavities in bone; the songs that in
centuries remained unsung, dancing
against each other’s backs in the dark,
wet and enigmatic hollow of the skull.

The veins all came popping back like
rats scurrying under a carpet- the folded
integument of the young man- that coagulated
from the surrounding slush and gathered
to the call of a memory: bells tolling in the
faraway church-- a hollow skull that has its
body rooted in the only-human souls of
men, women and the ecclesiastics on the hill.

All suited again and ready with thoughts,
the hollowness bloomed inwards with flowers
that captured the lethargic, unexpecting
secrets lingering on the tips of the eyeballs;
holding them captive in their bland,
monochrome petals that only painted
pictures they were not expected to.

Blossomed, garnished and piped and networked,
the untemporal visage clinked its new-found
senses into place, lashing out its purple
queen-tongue to expose the ivory daggers
that bespangled the courtiers’ chairs around
the serpentine dame: daggers that had the
sweet-salt taste of the canined beasts’ delight, that
were all anew, and pierced through the cloths
of their seats with renewed vigour and passion;
indifferent, yet masochistically pleased by the strands of
red silk that flew up and flowed down their soft rosey seats.

The callousness teetered away like water in
cupped hands and the sun rose to colour
the skies and their kingdom once more-
the flowers in that forgotten-empty mind
began to bear fruit and simmer up the forest
that once had thrived, and the serpent-queen
felt the anticipation that thrummed the air:
vibrations rose from under her reign, all the
dagger-men’s seats shaking as they and their
queen danced to the earthquake and
together all their world began to shout and
they said, they cried: “You forgot to love me.”

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