Heads you Win… more on the Feast Day of St John the Baptist

Salome by Carol Ann Duffy

I’d done it before (and doubtless I’ll do it again, sooner or later)
woke up with a head on the pillow beside me
– whose? –
what did it matter?

Roser (01)

Good-looking, of course, dark hair, rather matted;
the reddish beard several shades lighter;
with very deep lines around the eyes,
from pain, I’d guess, maybe laughter;
and a beautiful crimson mouth that obviously knew
how to flatter…
which I kissed…
Colder than pewter.
Strange. What was his name? Peter?

St_John_the_baptist_-_Leonardo_Da_Vinci
St John the Baptist by Leonardo Da Vinci

Simon? Andrew? John? I knew I’d feel better
for tea, dry toast, no butter,
so rang for the maid.
And, indeed, her innocent clatter
of cups and plates,
her clearing of clutter,
her regional patter,
were just what I needed –
hungover and wrecked as I was from a night on the batter.

Never again!
I needed to clean up my act,
get fitter,
cut out the booze and the fags and the sex.
Yes. And as for the latter,
it was time to turf out the blighter,
the beater or biter,
who’d come like a lamb to the slaughter
to Salome’s bed.

2006 Italian film, Chiamami Salomè (Call me Salomè), directed by Claudio Sestieri
2006 Italian film, Chiamami Salomè (Call me Salomè), directed by Claudio Sestieri

In the mirror, I saw my eyes glitter.
I flung back the sticky red sheets,
and there, like I said – and ain’t life a bitch –
was his head on a platter.

Salome kisses the head - [c]  Illustrator Barry Moser
Salome kisses the head – [c] Illustrator Barry Moser

Published by The Delightful Mrs P

Witch, Writer, Card Slinger, Chocolate Lover, Tea Drinker, Cake Eater & Mystic. A Northern Lass, a Walker between and betwixt. I'll talk to Anyone, dead or alive.

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