by Deborah Oster Pannell

is there some subtle advantage
tucked between the pages
of guilt and submission?
You force my head down
again and again
burying my nose
in the
crotchety tangle
of your excess
until all my senses
bear witness
to your domination
I am ashamed to admit
that some inner embrace
has caught my tongue
and my words have
lost their
easy shimmer
It's become a burden
to feed myself
so I've let you
fill my mouth
with all matters of
aggressive, spiced up,
hopped up
overcooked meats
and pungent

that singe
my tongue
until I
can no longer
conjure the sweetness
of a plum
as but an obscured
of a cool breeze
on my face
on a bygone morning
nothing has prepared me
for this assault
nothing has eased
the pain of entry
instead I've
lost my knack
for subtle interaction
can barely remember
the clicking, ticking
heartbeat seconds
of joy
that once made me
sing my own name
yes I have given in
to the new whole,
and the bittersweet longing for
chamomile tea in the morning
and butterscotch pudding
at night