The absence

The absence waits for the man.

Her intention, razor focused as the knives that are her claws spin the threads of human soul. Fine as acupuncture needles that don’t heal, he doesn’t feel them as she claws she claws and pulls him deep inside her open wound.

She pulls with a force as strong as his own soul’s desire to be free and hungers when he is not near as she waits forever, her white gown in tatters for him to prove her existence. She’s got baby smells and wedding bells inside, her eyes on the prize.

With a smile she ensnares, with her words and her wits and most of all what no man is a match for, with the promise of a thing given once or twice and never again.

Come close to the edge, see just under the surface these are not reeds but her hair and her eyes unfocused, seeking their target asking “Are you he?”

Don’t be afraid. The absence can smell no flesh but his, feeling nothing but lack as she waits for no-one but him.

He doesn’t see it coming.

Suddenly there and there, her claws are inside as she pulls him towards her and down.

He goes down yet still he breathes, for the absence drowns a man not in water but in the sweetness of his own essence. He feels amplified and it feels good.


And. Whipped.

She’ll drag him down every time but baby, don’t you want it? You’ve been a bad boy, your woman at home while you sink into the slime with the absence.

Who’s your mama, baby?

I walk this dark place. I have no claws (last time I looked), but this knife I hold, this knife is for her.

Why do I hunt the absence? I will tell you, for I no longer have another to tell.

I wrote it down so I wouldn’t forget.


1. For the claws in his back.
2. For the thing that existed,
by virtue of its own beauty,
That she pulled apart
Because she hated it,
As one might flay and peel
The flesh of a human,
Or the wings from a butterfly,
With her pleading,
Eyes misty and claws extended,
Womb sucking.
3. For calling him to her.
Every. Day.
4. For doing it knowing
I would push him away
When he came home
With the smell of her on him.
5. For the indignity of hearing
The steel of her claws
Sing in his blood
While he fucked me.

As if I could forget.

How she got them so deep into one such as him I wouldn’t know. But he was young when she found him and although he believed himself her master, by the time we met he spoke with her words and his eyes moved to the left when he spoke of her, this spliff-addled dispensary of serotonin reuptake inhibitors, just gladder than Pollyanna whenever he was with her or with anyone as long as it wasn’t with me.

Sometimes he would struggle, a butterfly pinned by the knives that slid back and forth inside his chest, and cry for his lost freedom but he would do anything, even move backwards in time to dull the pain of withdrawal and the guilt that would eat him alive if he let it get close enough.

For years she whispered in her concern, how sad this woman who keeps us apart when I need you more and so every day they shared a taste to comfort her, to comfort him and comfort them all I mean, don’t they all want me?

I’m irresistible, right absence?

This was the deal they made.

I feel sick.

I am long since lost on these dark paths, watching the moonlight and listening for the sobbing of a lost child as she calls him to her. The absence is a subtle prey but I have heard her song often enough to know it well.

When I hear it I will run forward and dive into her pool. I will swim past the hair which is not reeds and the unseeing eyes and the claws which are knives, and I will part the monster’s head from its body.

I will do this. I will watch its blood fly into the moon filled sky.

If only to still the monster that now resides in me.

The absence waits for the man.

I wait for her.

The absence


Sydney, Australia

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