7.03 / March 2012

Self-Portrait as Sex Addict Chained to a Rusty Heater

listen to this poem

-After Craig Brewer’s Black Snake Moan

Miss Mayella says There ain’t no better cure
          for the blues than good pussy
and I guess she’s half right, but I prefer men
when I elbow-crawl through Magnolias,
          crushed cigarette butts.

                    Just-shucked corn.


It’s this awful itch, a hellfire born from
          my memories in heat.


Lazarus claims God dropped me in his path,
          a bare naked angel,
                    some three-legged
basset hound shackled to his radiator.
          But I’m no doped up diva.
I’m not a bitch in need of neutering.


The dog never wants to writhe across the grass.


Still, when I spat in Laz’s face and said
               I hated him, it wasn’t true.
                    That man never asked
why I wasn’t smothered at birth. No raping
          me gently in puddles of booze.


Swanky Southern love:
          a man who finally tongues my wounds.


                    The best moonshine
               in all of backwoods Mississippi, and I swear,
he thinks I’m worth a song or two
                    in that drafty house,
               as the good lord reaches
calloused hands down to rob us of our skin.

                    Our drunk, hungry mouths.

Brandi Nicole Martin's poetry has appeared in Stirring: A Literary Collection and other publications. For now, she lives and writes in Tallahassee, Florida.
7.03 / March 2012