ceremony for an opium eater by Nikoletta Nousiopoulos

me and the swords / stood pillaring in the swamp

a horde of deadly sharps /& a barefoot walk / could not

free any bondage / these ties are voluntary / to be a hero

to be a martyr / reflected off every blade / this is

my initiation / not my prison / not my coming out of hiding

I look like myself when my eyes are left out / bestirred

like darkness / that examines what is human and what is

quiet disaster / I was caught seducing / caught menacing

every tragic factory / where memory is designed

to betray the kindest ghosts / to become a host of

holy sanctions / and this is the law / so be it so be it

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