Life with Mr Darcy

By | 1 April 2010

The nights are distilled into unmentionables.
He comes home and stands over my bed. Candlelight
on my face is filtered through the stake holes
in his body. I am suddenly aware of love – the constant
dripping, the smells, the vulgarity of a husband
deprived early of his teeth. In the kitchen,
the axe and hammer are my austere companions.
He takes his bread with entrails, the remains of a severed arm.
My sister Jane, with a banged-up sword sticking out
of her torso, ate his heart one night while visiting with Mr Bingley.
A large spider lives in there now, spinning. A cobweb
covers the cavity. Never in any danger of falling out,
instead it lures in prey. What is the mouth
if not another orifice for hoarding foreign objects.
I darn his wounds, wipe the filth from his rotting toes,
recollect the moment he tied my hands and feet
on our wedding night. I am here to honor him. It is a ritual.

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