Kaavya Kshiraj and Lauren Bowcock, “sharp GODS, knife SMILES, corroding KISSES”

Dionysus’ eyes flash and Apollo can’t tell if that’s just the bleached white of pulsing lights but he watches the sharp angles of his dance anyways, the gracelessness of the graceful and the way he downs a shot like it’s not a burn but a balm. what’s the definition of grace, anyways? the way Dionysus throws himself into the dance like his heart is quivering to throw itself out of his body, edges like they could slice skin, eyes infatuated with something. (and what is it that he’s lovestruck for? pretend you don’t know)

[DIONYSUS IS DOWNING SHOT AFTER SHOT AFTER SHOT UNTIL HE CAN’T HEAR THE MUSIC. AND THE MUSIC IS IN HIM, RESTING AND REVERBERATING DEEP IN HIS BONES. HE LETS GO BECAUSE: WAS HE REALLY EVER HOLDING ON? BECAUSE: APOLLO. APOLLO. APOLLO.

A P O L L O

IS LOOKING AND HIS EYES  AREN’T PIERCING BUT PRICKING THEIR WAY INTO DIONYSUS AND THERE IS A ROOM THAT WRITHES BETWEEN THEM AND DIONYSUS DOES NOT- WILL NEVER HAVE- THE GUTS TO CLOSE THAT DISTANCE. DIONYSUS IS DOWNING SHOT AFTER SHOT AFTER SHOT BECAUSE THE MUSIC IS APOLLO AND THE PEOPLE ARE DIONYSUS- THRASHING AND TOSSING AND WORSHIPPING.]

Apollo doesn’t notice himself move (except he does, he does, he can’t stop it the way he can’t stop the visceral tug of Dionysus’ mouth) and then his hand is on Dionysus’ arm. the world is stopping or starting or collapsing and Apollo can’t tell which but he swears he can see atoms. and the light is cold neons shifting into each other and washing Dionysus in purple and Apollo’s breath is hiding in his throat but he forces it out and his smile curves vicious.

(Apollo doesn’t know where his sister is but oh he remembers her saying he breaks everything he touches)

(Apollo is a god, remember, and gods are prowling creatures with blood dripping down their chins and gods are not kind with their fervor. Apollo’s hands are not gentle, nothing made of light could be.)

Apollo’s smile curves vicious.

[AND APOLLO IS THERE, ALWAYS ALWAYS THERE AND NOW HE IS HERE AND HE IS PULLING DIONYSUS OUT FROM WHERE HE HIDES UNTIL DIONYSUS IS SUDDENLY SO TERRIFYINGLY THERE AND AND AND-

– and.

and he smiles.

BUT HIS SMILE CURVES SHARP.

BUT DIONYSUS SHOULD KNOW BETTER BEFORE HE SNAPS BACK IMITATIONS OF A KISS. BUT APOLLO SMILES AND HIS SMILE CURVES SHARP. BUT DIONYSUS WILL GRIN BACK ALL SHARP PANTHER SNARLS, ALL BARING TEETH, ALL WILD ANIMAL.  BUT WILD ANIMALS SHOULDN’T KNOW LOVE. BUT WILD ANIMALS KNOW DESPERATION.

but dionysus is a god too.

BUT DIONYSUS IS ALL BUT A HALF MADE GOD, TOO MORTAL, TOO LITTLE, TOO MUCH TRYING TO FILL THE CRACKS. ]


Lauren and Kaavya are poets who operate online, contributing to zines and making poetry books in hope of one day being published.