Issue No. 6, Autumn 2013

Madame de Pompadour Thinks of Little Red Riding Hood
Kristin Stoner

In the afternoon they were fucking next to a plate of figs.
Grapes on the floor, rain on the windows.
All she could see was the ivory canopy above her, and something
like a red cap moving through the forest of silk,
a little, lost ghost.

Maybe it was the heavy smell of spiced swan on his breath,
or maybe it was the wine.
Whatever it was, that little hood took her to their graves,
the ones she could not keep inside,
children who departed in a spill as red as that waving cap.

She was holding him now, the descendant of the sun,
self-proclaimed fool of a man,
just as that taunting girl had once held a beast,
wild with hunger,
tamed him with knowing touch, warmed herself in its fur.

Kristin Stoner has been an instructor of English at the college level for the past ten years. She received her MA in Literature and Creative Writing from Iowa State University and in 2008 graduated from Antioch University LA with her MFA in poetry. Some of her recent publications include Natural Bridge and Review Americana.