issue 44: walking in twilight

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poet's statement

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

This collection is all about the darkness that surrounds us as well as within us. From Vampiric desires, to the juxtaposition of sinners and saints, we are not free from that darkness. Instead of running away from it, let this twilight of the soul be a part of us, as there can be no light without it.

That Day

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

a pauper's box for
my grandmother

rich cousins
showing off
their jewelry

crocodile tears
from well-off

she was a mystic
they said
she was a heretic

a final blessing
from a purse-lipped priest

and she goes into
the ground

I wonder if
she's screaming


Love of Mine

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

I watch you
As you lay down
Beside me
In this bed
We've shared
For fifty years.


You are no longer
A chiseled man
In the prime of youth
Yet your countenance
Still ignite in me
A passion I cannot deny


Your brow that has
Been furrowed in the mornings
Are now unlined
Free of worries
And the cares that
Take hold of you in the day.


Your chapped lips
Part slightly
Even as you breathe
The very same lips
I kiss from the first
Time I said you're mine.


I run my fingers
Along your arm.
Time has been unkind
For your skin has
Grown coarse
Where it was once smooth.


It must be hard
To live with me,
Who is frozen in time
For a hundred years.
Still, I gladly turn back
From immortality for you.


You asked, once, why
I have never turned you.
I never once wanted
To afflict you with this curse.
To never know

The release of death.

So now, as you have taken
Your last breath,
As my heart breaks
In a million pieces
I wait for the light to claim me
That I may be where you are.


- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

the scent of nightshade heavy in the air
a cold glass of champagne in my hand
a roll of hash in the other
a night of intoxication
of moral asphyxiation
in a hotel in the middle of nowhere.

I have been here for as far as I can remember
willingly or not, I can no longer say
every night, we feast with flesh and drink
naked bodies grinding,
moaning and groaning
skin against skin, breath mingling with breath

then there was once a man who came
to these damned halls one evening
weary as he was from his travels
I welcomed him,
invited him
to join in our earthly delights.

but no sooner did he look
for a way out of this wretched place
calling for the blood of he
who had us trapped here
who orchestrated this hell
calling us to free ourselves of our bonds.

to no avail; we are and will always be
chained to our appetites and our debaucheries
there is no way out of this hotel
of horrors and fantasies
of past indiscretions and future conspiracies

so come; stay a while, stay forever.

Drink Deep

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

It's forbidden.

An unholy union
in the darkest hour
of night.

Hold me in your
arms and let
me taste of
your blood


I want your flesh
between my teeth
as you set fire
to mine


Take my soul
or what is left of it
do with it what you will
the night is young,
the darkness endless

Drink of me and be
one of the undying
take your fill of immortality
and feel my lust
for eternity.

All the Same

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)


He stands
Host in hand
As you say 'amen'
He doesn't smile
His countenance dour
He judges you
He speaks in tongues
To guide you
To the right path
But he takes innocence
By the hand
And leaves it wretched


He stands
Under the wan light
Of a corner streetlamp
A winning smile
His clothes dashing
His gesture inviting
He genuflects
On the altar of flesh
Paying homage with his mouth
As he comes home
To a withered mother
Tenderness lights his face


Confessions uttered
Ablutions given
Prayers whispered
Face to face
One condemns

The other embraces
The righteous sins
But does the sinner
Become righteous?
As saint and sinner
Touch cheek to cheek
They dance the waltz of irony

The Magician

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

My will be done.
The power lies
upon my fingertips.
with wand in hand,
I command nature
to do as I bid.


The mysteries,
I seek faithfully
until there is nothing
unknown to me.
The path to knowledge
lies in the sacred texts,
and thus must I
keep learning the esoteric.


But by cunning and skill
I bend others to my will.
And so my path will be laid bare
if only I dare.

tick tock

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

tick tock goes
the clockwork
gazing with
ruined eyes

take me to
bed tonight
sing to me

midnight screams
from ruined
lips they
shatter night's
cold silence

only no
one can hear
you as you
lose your voice,
my mistress.

quiet now
I'm here
beside you

The Killing Sight

- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

You're so beautiful.
That is all I can say.
My last words
be that as it may.

How I have fallen
for those piercing eyes
that look down on me
from such glorious heights.

I care not that I am
looking from the end
of a barrel of a gun;
my heart you do rend

So take me now,
my beautiful assassin!
I have no regrets;
I am yours for the taking.


- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

Copper coats my tongue
as your lips touch mine.
The trap was sprung;
to submit is divine!

Thorns dig deep
into burning flesh,
as lust seeps
into innocence afresh.

Roses bloom
announcing our doom:
pain-laced pleasure
beyond measure.

In the gloaming
of oncoming dark,
Eros succumbs to claiming
under heaven's arc

But as fantasy shatters
and reality sets in,
our minds are left in tatters
acknowledging our sin.


- kristine ann gajitos (bio)

Every night, I can hear their screams
seeping through the walls' seams.
The loud bangings, the laughs;
the shadow figures round the corners
of my eyes.

In group therapy, my counselor said
"What was your mother like?"
Like it had anything to do with
the ghosts that I see.
Are they just in my head?

But I heard before that this place
has a certain past; something unsavory
something quite nasty.
Something in the likes of Madame Laveau.
But that can't be right. Can it?

Still they come into my room.
Standing in corners, watching me.
So still. So quiet. Must they all be like that?
Then one would suddenly scream at me,
and I'd scream right back.

No! Please! Let me out! Let me out now!
They're here with me!
They're after me!
Their hands! They're claws!
Don't touch me!

No! No! No! NO! NO! NO!

"Don't move. This is for your own good.
This is haloperidol. It will calm you down."

No! They're after me!
God! They're behind you!!!
Can't you see them?!
So still... So grey and so still...
Why must they be so still...

end of issue 44. go back to issues page.

the poetry juicebox
an international poetry & art publication
the poetry juicebox