by Alexis Rhone Fancher
Knives cut both bread and throats, he warns, the stiletto’s steel tip teasing my trachea. A love tap. I’m used to it. I don’t react anymore; I bake. I knead, pound the dough instead of him. Each day when he leaves for court, those $2,000 suits camouflaging his viciousness, a brief reprieve. I envision his face in the smacked-down dough, push out the air pockets, dream of suffocation. I slap him, punch him, only to watch him rise. While he proofs, I look for loopholes, binge-watch Forensic Files, its endless stories of stymied desire, hour after hour of scheme and kill, each murder more gruesome, honed. I take notes, stick in a shiv to see if he’s done, plot that he comes to a similar bad end. I shape loaves like alibis, knife-notched before they go into the oven, frenzied jabs and slices. I sharpen the blade, ready for his return. Like him, I’ll never speak without a lawyer present.
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"Domestic Violence" was first published in UNSHEATHED, an Anthology, edited by Betsy Mars, 2019.
L.A poet Alexis Rhone Fancher is published in Best American Poetry, Rattle, Poetry East,
Hobart, VerseDaily, American Journal of Poetry, Duende, Plume, Diode, Wide Awake:
Poets of Los Angeles, and elsewhere. She’s the author of five published poetry collections, most
recently, Junkie Wife (Moon Tide Press, 2018), and The Dead Kid Poems (KYSO Flash
Press, 2019). EROTIC: New & Selected, publishes in 2020 from New York Quarterly. Her
photographs are published worldwide, including River Styx, and the covers of Pithead Chapel,
Heyday, and Witness. A multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee, Alexis is poetry
editor of Cultural Weekly. www.alexisrhonefancher.com