for Miss Donna 
I can’t imagine you kept the shrunken head 
in a bag the whole drive up from New Orleans. 
All humid with hibiscus and bourbon, 
it needed to breathe. 
Mouth stitched shut, 
it pleaded for a little tenderness, 
so I brought it as close as I could to home. 
In the spice cabinet, 
it slept with the cinnamon and rosemary, 
flavoring everything we ate with such 
swampboat magic 
that we forgot all about curses. 
Every night, though, 
I’d kiss its wrinkled brow 
and sprinkle brickdust at my door. 

Published in Harts & Minds Vol. 1, Iss. 3.

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