“Of Saints and Sin” by Sarah Stevens


I am aloof.
The art of fucking transforms me
A toddler with a sword
Made solely of flesh
A bud of flesh.

Still, I have always been good at making friends.

The kind I am ashamed of
Uninvited, she creeps into my bed
I greet her with rolled eyes
Tautly pulled lips

Anxiety and I have always
Been close.
Imaginary, yet familiar
Together we work in silence
To keep the past hidden
Like a scar just below the curve
Of a hip.

I’ve spent a lot of my time as a story-teller.
Once upon time
I told you stories,
On the banality of the traumatic.

Of the silence that often greets force
Soft and feminine
A feather pillow, a plea
A pact with God

Of the smell of dusty carpet
The way it burns your nose.
When laid hands reach to damn you.

Of kitchen sinks
The rough texture of a soiled
Wash cloth.

The taste of glazed carrots.
The energy of rooms meant
Just for waiting.

A pregnant pause
I would hold my breath
Deep in my chest
Anticipating your response.
Once upon a time
I told you this story.

You said it turned you on.


If you dig Sarah Stevens’ word skills, be sure to read “The Tyranny of Cute: A Narcissistic Satire of Sorts.”

Photograph and drawings by Katelyn Renner

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