All Betts Off

She was an Elizabethan queen of

regal bearing: wearing nothing 

but the clothes of sharp

wisdoms that hurt others time and

time again.

And he knew she would suffer for

her righteous arrogances, and

he knew he would die his life – 

and maybe that was dye his

life – over and over

as a result,

and so he went

ahead, and in his head

there was nothing he could shape

nor form nor express as mother

might milk for defenceless

newborn.

And so one day he realised

that the evil it was begetting be-

got no future worth saving.

And so one day he realised

that mother and daughter were

equally weary of doing the 

good he had imagined them 

capable of.

And so one day he realised

his foolishness, and 

then he knew 

that toxic is

as toxic does

as toxic was,

and 

toxic has [to].

And game on no longer was,

nor can be,

nor should be,

nor would 

be,

anything but Betts, daughter

and mother both, utteringly

off, utteringly

socked, utteringly

socketed like

ancient 

web of natural lie.

And this the truth it most

certainly was:

love was no medium of

exchange in the world

he could any more 

safely in-

habit.

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