Following Forked Tongue

by Erin Halliday

After nights and weeks of
He being tiger and
I being snakes,
We enter into these lifts of limbo.
I’ve given up my venom and rattle,
Yet in doing so they seem
To have dissolved inside
Instead of outside of me –
Fused into a mixture of
Acid and spite and
Sick, milky lethargy.
They have corroded the weight in me
And now I have lifted,
Left my belly on the floor
While my limbs, wrists and ankles
Press the ceiling.
I imagine what she would
Say to me, perhaps,
“Now that’s what you get for
Not properly disposing of venom, girl”
Well, maybe his stripes
Are up here somewhere, and can
Cut this nothingness into
Something like love.