Thursday, January 12, 2017

Arsenic Mirror

When we scry with an arsenic mirror, poison
blackens the brightest suns,
fouls the fairest fortunes,
and smudges the saintliest souls.
Glass gassed with our own
undigested venom gives a glimpse
of the godless ghosts we're twinned
to in the womb.

Arsenic mirror (a highly unscientific definition) - an old method of detecting arsenic poisoning.  If the ignited gasses from the stomach of a corpse smudged a cool glass or plate, arsenic was present. Anyone else watching Taboo?

For Kerry's prompt at Real Toads

12 comments:

Sanaa Rizvi said...


poison
blackens the brightest suns;
it fouls the fairest fortunes
and smudges the saintliest souls.


Eee❤️ You totally rocked the prompt, MZ!

blueoran said...

To read our dark, use a dark mirror. "Glass gassed with our own / undigested venom" is a hellish way to get one's news, but these days it seems apropos. Like soothing Trump -- if he smelt it, he dealt it.

Kerry O'Connor said...

I am definitely going to watch Taboo. Haven't started yet but who would pass up the sight of Tom Hardy?

The premise of the arsenic mirror is most intriguing. The notion of a test for indigested venom - on a metaphoric level - is a very powerful trope.

Sioux said...

MZ--I guess I need to watch Taboo, if it inspired this poem in any way.

Gillena Cox said...

"undigested venom "

a very powerful metaphor, in the light of recent politics - world observing, luv this poem

much love...

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I am struck by the "godless ghosts we're twinned to in the womb". Yikes.

Jim said...

No womb twins nor wombs for me, Mom ZEE. A bird dropped me on a rock and the sun hatched me. Been told that. Thanks for telling of the arsenic moon.
..

Kim Russell said...

Oh yes! I am watching Taboo and loving it too. And I love your poem - deliciously dark as always.

Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Wonderfully shivery. Love the alliterations.

Fireblossom said...

Time for new lenses.

grapeling said...

and old lace. ~

razzamadazzle said...

This was fascinating! I love all the alliteration.