#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day 13 : “This Castle Is a Charnel House”




This Castle Is a Charnel House

the queen of hearts
prepares her death nest,
calling upon names
etched in a bedside table,
dream notes carved
into an antique,
marring it unforgettable

every sunbeam covers her
in barbed body armor,
crown of nettles burrowing
into a creased forehead,
marks of the years, brittle
from all the shuffling
scarring her once stoic face

cards of defeat lie upon
her desk, face up, well-
wishes sprinkled amongst
dried flowers & practitioners’
names, a puzzle she’ll never
piece together because
there is no time left for planning

ahead or otherwise, a head
of household, matriarchal
moon, too tired to rule
wants only to lie down
with knaves & spades
of bygone memories
while the king looks on

forlorn & helpless, scepter
rusted with tears, he’s
saying goodbye with silence;
she can’t look at him, her luck
of the draw, an ace amongst
jokers, her companion,
well-suited & strong

night is falling & stars
begin rehearsing her requiem,
they’ll sing her to her final
sleep someday & she is nearly
ready, a few more feathers,
twigs, & good days to pillow
her body so the shedding
of everything can begin


Published by Jennifer Patino

Poet.

25 thoughts on “#NaPoWriMo 2021 Day 13 : “This Castle Is a Charnel House”

    1. Not exactly. 😊 It’s actually kind of funny. I was watching that show When Calls the Heart & the saloon is named “Queen of Hearts”. I saw the sign & the first line jumped in my head. The rest just came once I wrote it down. The poem has nothing to do with the show though. 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

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