Green jealousy grates, and festers.
Everything rots, decays
Into writhing snakes and poisons
The Grecian girl,
Turns her into a marble-eyed monster.
Makes her mourn the time before
Zeus took her, shook her up,
Like all the ladies before;
Envy squeezes her neck like a noose rope,
Or a python,
Swims up the veins
Like slippery, green serpents
Until it reaches the heart,
Where it clots up like a pulmonary embolism,
Strangulating the lungs.
A black feeling settles in.
As if the compassion-centers of the brain
Have withered and temporarily died:
An iron grey-matter corpse,
A stern, slate-colored eye
Seeing nothing but what’s lacking in itself.


Leisa Kilby was a finalist in the Academy of American Poets contest who has also been published in TheBurg, Inked, and Fission.