Beauty is a death camp. The promise of pain. The last door that you close when you flee a fire. Beauty is a war. The broken heel. The sound of thousands of soldiers marching.
Beauty is the chorus. The whining voice. The human table set before the cannibal. Beauty is the door. The gun that fires blanks.
The garbage dump that hides the body.
The empty glass.
The bitch slap.
The bed house full of screwing Saints.
Beauty is the jackpot.
The abortion wire.
The occupation of the body.
Beauty is the knock up.
The knock off.
Beauty is the Beast.
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Nan Byrne is a feminist poet and television writer. The author of two books, her poems have appeared in a variety of feminist journals including Phoebe: A Feminist Quarterly, Canadian Woman Studies, Earth’s Daughters, Critical Matrix: Princeton Journal of Women, Gender, and Culture, Poemmemoirstory, So To Speak, and elsewhere. She is the recipient of grants from the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and the Vermont Studio Center, and is currently at work on a documentary about Margaret Fuller, an early feminist and the first woman journalist.