Sunflower Skins

October 12, 2008

Hulga’s Gift

Filed under: poetry — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — Sunflower Skins @ 11:35 pm

Hulga the Angel descends in the dark.
Her stump leg scrapes the ground. She knows full well
Her presence brings no peace nor chastity.
Not here, not anymore. Because I am
Re-stitching this dress, pulling out the seam.
For each knot I tie, the tighter will be
My new skin, adjusted by the years
To fit over new curves, new bones, break new hearts.
Let down the hem, iron out the creases:
This chocolate silk dress is yours. I made it
For you. Time only makes my blood run cold
And memory gets richer with heat, with want.

Hulga points to a violin player.
She says, “Maybe this was the only man
You ever really loved. And even then
It was only your desire you loved.”
It is more than just her name that is ugly.
It is my shame, my lust, that in itself
Makes my identity, summer after
Summer. Put on my dress, cut by a bow.
Measure my life against the day we met.

There will always be death in this body.
Hold it close, embrace wounded memory.
Truth is embedded in divine flesh. Yours.
I will hear your music for my whole life
And I will remember your tenderness,
Part of me forever, like a stump leg.
If you see me haunting your dreams, or don’t,
Whether you can or cannot forget me;
I will wear this dress with everything
I ever wanted in you or in him.

Hulga points to a reveling sinner.
She says, “Maybe this was the only man
You ever really wanted. Even still
It was only yourself that you needed.”

September 26, 2008

Mon Petit Mort

Filed under: poetry — Tags: , , , , — Sunflower Skins @ 9:54 pm

Now into this life I see
The shape of you across my bed:
You are the Little Death of me.

The city spread out like the sea,
You reached to the wound in my head.
Now into this life I see.

Whate’er touch meant—my want—only
Love not your wife; choose me instead.
You are the Little Death of me.

Consume my heart entirely.
All words are for my Belovéd.
Now into this life I see.

Our bodies shake; we are set free
From the past. Shame and guilt are shed.
You are the Little Death of me.

A world apart from pain, we
Awaken ourselves from the Dead:
Now into this life I see
You are the Little Death of me.

September 16, 2008

Excerpt from “Paradise Within”

July 28, 2008

Excerpt from “The Briton Self Essays”

Filed under: prose — Tags: , , , , , , , — Sunflower Skins @ 11:02 pm
The Briton Self Essays

By Briton Self


It was with great celebration, and soon apparent appropriation, that I declared to the World my Self on that fateful Tuesday in September, 2004. I hadn’t expected such an uproar, but my announcement didn’t go over as well as I’d imagined. By the time I arrived home late that evening, after some congratulatory drinks at the pub, the newspapers were already swooning with my misadventures. It seemed that I’d become the next Kate Bloomfield or Madonna, although not with quite the proper exterior. Too rough and subversive to become a national icon, harbouring my “grand plans for ordained domination” via my new Self, the World only had time to consider when I would strike. Citizens were advised to barricade themselves with bottled water and to have a straight supply of CNN hooked up to their veins. Of course the chaos was all blamed on me; apparently I was the catalyst for a major movement of rebels, all Self-Proclaiming, in the streets of Bangkok and the waters of the Seine, moving along the trade routes of Tibet and through the offices of Wall Street. They were coming, I was their leader, and nothing could stop it, not even the national guard because, demanding peace, UCLA students filled all the guns with daisies. The US Presidents firmly supported the British Prime Minister, saying the future looked bleak for the Beautiful Republican Countries, but, God Willing, we would not achieve our demands.

It appeared that everything had gone wrong.

After a lifetime of insecurities, I have finally found peace with my Self. I did not want to be a leader for anyone but my Self; that was the whole point, as I had seen it, and I expected the option of expressing this pleasure to be readily available. Perhaps, however, I should have simply turned on my reliable computer to explain my Self neatly and comfortably to a small group of web-caming individuals. Perhaps I had overestimated society’s preparedness to accept such an open address. Yet when one is so excited by the appearance of the desired, is one’s mind on the consequences for a supposedly liberal human race? Thirty-six years old with the final recognition of what I really wanted out of life, I could not have resigned my Self to such a target audience. I didn’t quite understand how I became the World’s #1 Enemy through my tiny triumph, but somehow I did. And is that treason? On what accounts, specifically?

This was all a big misunderstanding. I had not meant to cause an uprising nor wanted to be the Head-Honcho Leader of an all-out terrorist gang, whose sole goal rested in freeing the Inner Self. I had hoped to merely “out” my Self and return to my telemarketing job in the small corner of the offices of The Daily Telegraph. Not that it kept me happy, but it didn’t keep me unhappy, and after all, I had enough money to eat and live and buy clothes and occasionally travel to exotic foreign lands, where I’d spend my hard-earned dollars on trinkets for my loved ones. I didn’t exactly enjoy my job, but I had found an ease in it, firmly believed that I was doing good for the country in that, at least, I wasn’t harming anyone or anything. True, I had had my fair share of hang-ups and angry voices during the interruptions of favorite TV shows, but all in all it was a good life. I had my friends. I had my hobbies. I had my Self. That shouldn’t be a scandal, should it?

[Order the full “The Briton Self Essays” chapbook through or Visit Briton’s web page at]

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