Pseudomonarchia Lacrimae – Sonya Vatomsky

Pity! A hollow word like a hollow tooth; all decay sweet til deep aches,
ghastly bills, a flinched grinding. You heap the words on the table
till the very cloth no longer shines through – the nice silk that matches
my best plates, my best forks. I eat your words with bread so they are
filling. The semantic emptiness of your phonology. The grammar of us
and the gramarye of what’s left. A blueprint’s red with an opened vein.
The soft hum of it, the thick smell of it. The tilt of the head and the
choking swallow of it. The slap of it. The no of it. The hand-shaped
bruise on the thigh of it. The lurching guts of it, the never-ending shit of
it. The sob and the sob and the sob of it. I eat your words like I swallow
the length of it, hollow in a hollow, the heart
from the rib of it,
the rib from the God of it.

Sonya Vatomsky is a Moscow-born, Seattle-raised feminist poetess ghost. She is the author of Salt is for Curing (Sator Press) and chapbook My Heart in Aspic (Porkbelly Press), and is a poetry editor at Fruita Pulp. Find her by saying her name five times in front of a bathroom mirror or at

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