Octavia’s Letter to Marcus Anthony on the Discovery of His Faithlessness

Let me write you love poetry,
Let me love you
in phases, with my false praises.
first quietly:
so no one can hear, no, not the neighbours,
not her, though she cups
your heart, snugly
ensconced, smug, certain she’s not interchangeable,
not just a part comprised of vulvic lips,
child-bearing hips, not nearly
as dispensable as the rest of your lovers.

Let me love you loud,
worship you in meter, in prosody,
in rhythm
Let me feed my crowd your sins, let me
give worth to the worthless blighted heresy
of your life,
redeem it in verse, retell it
as something better, the beauty
of this, of course, is no one would know, no one
would recognize you in my glamour, no one
but you, so let me
love you

(Editors’ Note: “Octavia’s Letter to Marcus Anthony on the Discovery of His Faithlessness” is read by Stephanie Malia Morris on the Uncanny Magazine Podcast Episode 23A.)

Cassandra Khaw

Cassandra Khaw writes many things. Mostly these days, she writes horror and video games and occasional flirtations with chick-lit. Her work can be found in venues Clarkesworld, Fireside Fiction, Uncanny, Lightspeed, Nightmare, and more. A Song for Quiet is her latest novella from Tor, a piece of Lovecraftian Southern Gothic that she worries will confuse those who purchased Bearly a Lady, her frothy paranormal romantic comedy.

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