January 30, 2018 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

Todd Mecklem photo



Ferral Willcox




Book of Phosphorus


after “Medusa” by Sylvia Plath



You have written another bible –

leaves bound to the spine of a maple

bleeding its end of days, end of days, end of days;

girdles of limbs strangle the pythons

embroiled in their kills, but you,

you were merciful. You bestowed yourself

in robed explosions. You were feathery, apart,

linguistic lace applied to the starched white collar.

You said “incendiary” and “defoliant”

when you meant hell, as Willie Peter stole away

in the Fenian fire with limp worms of terms for sleep

leaving us to pick at our toenails and cancers.

We hid where the roofs were thin

to be sure we could hear the rain

when it came. But we read.

We threaded the words in our heads

around the grey root coils sprouting

out vipers, lineages, liturgical squid

to fondle the hairdresser in her shock

and awe. You were always shocking

the limpids into a murk of snakes.

This was never a job for scissors.

Hacksaws, machetes, lodge

in the turgid flesh of your text.

“Do you know God?” you said.

I got up, and I ran.





The golden tea



The golden tea and its heat beads pearling clear glass

A slippery light, slanted deftly, appears to drift

stage left, in truth, there is a hole in the roof

that lights the naga aura in conspiracy with certain moons…

enlightened serpent, a nemesis, a wreath of death

with wishes blessed in the glow, the still middle

candle rises where warm wax pools, shamash

of the night sky touching the mewling kittens

stuck outside in the empty cistern. There are no gods

for us. No yahwehs buddhas christs. Enter, stage right,

Science. We are the control group. We are held

in suspense. Will He love us? Forever?






Ferral Willcox

Ferral Willcox is a U.S. born poet and musician currently living in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Ferral’s work can be found in Per Contra, Peacock Journal, concis, Calamaro, and elsewhere. Ferral’s work was featured in the Q-Street venue of the Philadelphia Fringe Festival, and she spent two months in residence at Starry Night Retreat in Truth or Consequences, NM.

Editor review


  1. ordinaryherbal January 31, at 20:20

    yes yes and many thanks slippery as young eels under the dock

  2. Rick January 31, at 02:39

    Just wonderful. A pleasure to read...


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