Treasure Island

Chris Tusa

(01.01,72 / New Orleans, Louisiana)

A Retired Voodoo Priestess Dreams of Revenge from The Psych Ward in Charity Hospital

Only three days and already I loathe this place,
this milk-white morgue, this smiling slaughterhouse,
where girls in straitjackets grow fat on pills,
floating on pale clouds of Clozapine,
sad white angels with their wings lopped off,
their eyes blind as stones rattling in a gris gris bag.

I’ve had it with these nurses, with their dull
white smocks and their hypodermic needles,
the smiling orderlies with black holes for eyes,
their veins pumped fat with steroids,
psychiatrists with the same filthy grins,
talking through their pink Pepto-Bismol mouths.

Do they know that with one pinch of cayenne
I could turn their liver into a hornet’s nest,
make roaches scurry through their black veins?
That with one single strand of horse’s hair
I could squeeze the breath from their fat pink necks,
stop the clock from ticking in their chest?

Do they see me in the cold dull afternoon
sewing bloodroot into dolls, drawing X’s in the air?
Do they know that while I stand in line for meds
I'm working a mean batch of spells in my head?
That at night I keep a crow’s foot in my pocket,
hidden like a white pill under my tongue?

Submitted: Friday, July 08, 2005
Edited: Saturday, July 09, 2005

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