Fiction - The Grey Area, Absinthe Literary Review

Thanatos Poetry
Richard Fein and Kimberly Simms

Found Poem
by Richard Fein

Gazing on a tombstone while touring a landmark cemetery,
I stand motionless before an inscription cut deep into the cold marble.

JOHN LOOK     1863-1919   
SARAH LOOK  1870-1918


JACK              1891-1892
ANA               1893-1896
TOM              1895-1918  KILLED IN ACTION IN FRANCE
SEAN             1896-1899
MARY            1897-1900

I write no poetry here.
It’s been hard for me to learn how to write nothing when everything is already written.

© 2002 Richard Fein

The Execution of Lady Jane Grey –Delaroche 
as Seen on My Bedroom Wall

by Kimberly Simms


He wondered if it was sexual—the thick

white blindfold, white satin dress laced tight

across her breasts. The executioner relaxed

leaning on his axe, his red tights stretched

over strong, shapely legs.


He questioned my Delaroche dreams.

If I fantasized the priest retreating

after laying the lady’s neck upon the block,

leaving her on pale knees—blind, terrified, expectant?


I told him I think of her hands—so slight,

translucent as communion wafers.

That I wonder what the priest whispered in her ear;

and the tense, serene look of the executioner—

what did it mean?


I told him I contemplate the hay

laid below the chopping block,

the gold shimmering quality

the artist bestowed—soft

as fallen blond curls.


© 2002 Kimberly Simms

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