Three Dark Poems by Stephanie Smith: “Breeding”, “The Dance”, and “Thorns”


You are afraid of the light
that burns inside you
like an unborn child
A thousand tiny spiders
gnawing at your bones

You are cautious of the wind
that brings a plague upon its wing
A fetid, ebon miracle
like a monster in the clouds
that swallows cruel men whole

You are sure that something's breeding there
Your body is not your own
And the sky is full of tumors
that terrorize the soul

You inhale the song of the universe
Fall asleep inside its chaotic womb
You find refuge in a lullaby
as the cancer chews away

The stars shed light that blinds your eyes
Your home is the darkness of a dream
A coldness in the white,
obscene infinity

The Dance

We cling to childhood
That epileptic dance
Of chaos and lace
A fire burning
In the face of madness
Where the death bell tolls each midnight:
The lonely sound
Of a heartbeat


You wear your crown so perfectly
both saints and sinners weep.

You whisper dirge songs in your sleep
while the blood runs warm, still, in your veins.

You shed your skin in hopes to join your
lover in the grave,

To save your mortal soul from the heat
of a burning flame.

You play the martyr much better than I.
There's a sacrifice I'm not willing to make.

But, aren't we all like lambs to the slaughter,
hobbling about on broken knees?

Our demon seed strewn over this doomed land.
Bodies splattered across the threshold of paradise.

Morgues and graveyards fill to excess.
And I am left to clean up the mess.

Stephanie Smith is a poet and writer from Scranton, Pennsylvania. Her work has appeared in such publications as PIF MAGAZINE, WHISTLING SHADE, NOT ONE OF US, THE HORROR ZINE, ILLUMEN, and LIQUID IMAGINATION. She can be found on Twitter @horrorsteph78 or at

If you enjoyed this story, you may also enjoy Five Dark Poems by Damon Hubbs.

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