"Opulence," he grins, gold dripping from his teeth

a thick sludge of metal-shine sliding down his chin

he says, "you're holy,"

he says, "let me canonise you,"

he says, "i am an alchemist"

he says, "chrysopoeia, chrysopoeia, chrysopoeia,"

gilded, golded, goldening

he slips his tongue into your mouth

and you swallow it all down. 






the heated blankets in your room weighed heavy

piled on top of me as I lay, sweating and sick

syrup-sweet medicine spooned into my slack mouth

slipping in and out of sleep

facing the kitchen. thinking about you feeding me

til i bloomed, til no one else could look at me

and the heated blankets were your body on mine

as i lay underneath you, sweating and sick

while you spooned ‘i love you’ into my waiting mouth

trying to soften the hardness of my teeth so that

my bites would be like kisses




Hannah Smith-Yen was born in Guisborough and grew up around the world. She is currently studying anthropology in London, writing a dissertation on the body in professional wrestling. Lately she's been reading The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and re-reading issues of Doom Patrol. You can find more of her

Darla Mottram