Arachnophilia | Prem Sylvester
There's a fistful of spiders in my chest Threadfeet scurrying out of step with my heavings This should explain the whiteness that runs up my throat Silk shocks of unknowing When will I see you next? Will I see you next? Questions I never asked Eggs cluster over my aorta I see you See you The web comes out backwards I'm running after you every time Telephone lines too fine to carry the weight of my want My hands move to the puppetry of eight legs linked ad nauseam I try to swallow the fur of spiderlegs when I visit Does this scare you away? The longer I hold them in, the louder they swarm the deeper they bury This is why I stumble when I speak in rotting tongues At night, I count out my tenants by the pleas they eat Gossamer webs melt between my fingers turn to resin my fears never leave my skin I wrap my heart in them Why must I pretend I am nothing if not a labyrinth of forgotten flesh? If you take a scalpel to my sternum each spider would escape to dark corners carrying my atrophied ventricles to its people a feast of silent teeth But this is not death only its pale cousin so I hold on to you I don't know how to let go of pain I don't want to teach my spiders of the pointe at web's end
Prem Sylvester is a writer from India who turns into words the ideas he catches a whiff of from time to time. Sometimes people read these words. His work has appeared in Homology Lit, Parentheses Journal, Rabid Oak, Turnpike Magazine, Rising Phoenix Review, and Memoir Mixtapes among other homes.