Love in Saccharine

Poem by Czarain Laqui

Art by Aiza Bragg

Feet flat against a dusty floor:

a layer of dead skin cells

and dog fur — this is Home —

but she is empty.


in all her trinkets whispering maudlin memories;

Humid breath,

Viscid lips.


Kiss her goodbye before brushing your teeth

and welcoming morning.

Let her lie still

and groan when you leave bed.

Leave her again.


Still she lingers against your gums,

sliding a coy tongue along canines,


dripping syrupy wishes down into your

lungs — it sloshes

When you walk downstairs

It sloshes

When you move to make breakfast

It sloshes

When all you can stomach is a cup of coffee,

Made too sweet and leaving a bitter film on your teeth.


She is empty.

Her womb: a breeding place for insects that crawl

In and out 

of old pastries,

leaving sticky trails of slick behind.

It’s proof of the way you’ve neglected her;

Your kindest lover,

Your sweetest companion,

Your Home.


But this is all you know

and all you will be.