Fire in the Chart

Fire in the Chart
Jacob Budenz

Mercury spins backwards. I seethe. I
learn: choose my missed-call battles
with shadow books and Tarot. Rising
sign in Leo (moon in Aries), terrorizing

gender has become my hobby: maxi
dress over hairy chest, lipstick

used as blush to cover razor burn,
fairy rage at the next stranger’s fingers
to graze abdomen, ass, nipple. Neck
noosed in his hands, snugly, I loosen

The Chariot reins this once. Twice. Three
days ago I swore I’d be Queen

of Pentacles—demon lady tamed—little
doll with pins pricked through the heart,
the eyes, to keep the gaze from roaming.
Temperance. My clock clangs an hour ahead
of his. Venus went direct at eleven fifty-four

the night before he said he’d come,
but here I am, still waiting.


Jacob Budenz is a writer, multi-disciplinary performer, and witch currently pursuing an MFA at University of New Orleans. He is the author of Pastel Witcheries (forthcoming in July 2018 with Seven Kitchens Press) and Spellwork for the Modern Pastel Witch (forthcoming in September 2018 with Birds Piled Loosely). Some of his work can be found in Assaracus, Glittership, Hinchas de Poesia, Slipstream Press (forthcoming), and more.