My Beatrice

My Beatrice

A Poem by L.A.

My Beatrice



Crimson coats my fingertips, coursing down

to muddy everything I touch. I run a


hand across your bedroom wall and smear scarlet

over soft yellow in dull, predictable


rays. Just last summer you spent countless humid

afternoons bent over a tin of blond paint


in this very corner, windows pushed open,

your girls’ laughter and bicycle bells singing


somewhere down the street. With each turn of my wrist,

I undo a dozen of your careful strokes.


Thoughts of Dante bleed in through the window where


once you looked out and saw your wife on her knees

in the garden. “Every good teacher is


practically a Beatrice, drawing students

to the Way,” you used to say, but now the red


has caked up under my nails and flies off in

hard, faded flakes, flakes that bury your daughters’


echoes of summer and engulf cucumbers

in your wife’s garden and swarm your splattered bed-


room walls with no Way in sight. The shreds swallow

your honey oak furniture, drink an old vase


of baby’s breath, and one-by-one suffocate us both.

© 2017 L.A.

Author's Note

"There are false goods, and false gods; not everyone who thinks he is pursuing God, or has found God, really has done so."

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Added on June 18, 2017
Last Updated on June 18, 2017
Tags: my beatrice, idolatry, icon, god, christianity, affair




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