Monday, June 8, 2015

Sara J. Tantlinger


You hold me like a ransom note
and love me the way a knife loves
a heart. The police tape is strewn
around us, yellow ribbons that scream
caution, caution, what have you done?

This murder scene love bleeds dark
rubies under my skin, and you can slice
into me all you like, but I remain viciously
tied to our passion crime, a wolf who refuses
to die by anything other than your mouth.

Your eyes, bruised with affection, promise
me forever, but I know that does not mean
golden sun and songbirds. Forever is cruel,
a chilled finality between us. I want it anyway
because I know you will meet me at the end.

Stop your shaking hands. Hold the knife against
our chests, grip me tight in your threatening
embrace, and I’ll promise to love you even when
your skin rots from your corpse. I will clutch your
bones to my heart and bid the world farewell.

Sara reads "Love Me Like a Murder Scene":

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Sara confesses: "The poem spawned from fascination with tragic, self-consuming love. How would Heathcliff be remembered if he didn’t beg Catherine Earnshaw to haunt him to his grave? That idea sparked the first line about possessing love like a ransom note, and then the poem’s story took off."

Guest editor Karen Petersen's ruling: "From the tantalizing title to its closing line, 'Love Me Like A Murder Scene' immediately got my attention and kept it. The poet uses crime scene homicide metaphors with a creepy brilliance that captures the obsessive nature of intense passion. I hope to see more from this writer in the future."

SARA J. TANTLINGER is pursuing her M.F.A. through Seton Hill University’s Writing Popular Fiction program. She enjoys writing horror poetry and can be found at odd hours of the night drinking tea and writing strange things. Find her on Twitter at @SaraJane524

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