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Larry, Moe, and Me: Poem by Craig Kirchner
I Live the Life I Chose: Poem by Richelle Slota
Death House: Poem by Richelle Slota
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Why is the Sky Cerulean?: Poem by Richard Allen Taylor
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Swirling in the Chaos: Poem by Dr. Mel Waldman
The Moira: Poem by Dr. Mel Waldman
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Moments Before Awakening: Poem by Michael Keshigian
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Dark Tales from Gent's Pens

Richelle Slota: Death House

103_ym_deathhouse_rosmus.jpg
Art by Cindy Rosmus 2024

Death House

 

By Richelle Slota

 

“I want it expensive, you don’t understand,”

said the old man, hunched in a wheelchair,

 

sucking oxygen, his thin, heavily veined hand

fluttering like a black and blue butterfly,

 

“Cool,” said the contractor who used to be

a hair stylist. “I can make it expensive.”

 

The old man coughed. “I want the equestrian barns

hand-built by Amish carpenters, the formal gardens,

 

the stocked ponds, the covered terraces, the libraries,

the tennis courts, the glass-tiled infinity pools,

 

I want the gravel paths, the quarters for seven-full-time staff,

the over-sized guest houses, the eight-car garage,

 

the Jerusalem limestone surfaces, the billiards rooms,

the hand-carved Honduran mahogany grand staircases,

 

I want the frosted Chihuly hand-blown-from-the-glory-hole

chandeliers, the 18th century unicorn chests,

 

the onyx sinks, the sunken tubs, the chef’s caliber kitchens,

the steam room, the whole house automation,

 

I want the curated art installations, the fully stocked

champagne cellars, the sound-absorbing cork floors,

 

the super-whisper condensers, the triple-stage motors

that move air in silence.” He paused, “This will be my last move.

 

This will be my death house.”

 

 

Richelle Lee Slota (formerly known as Richard) writes poetry, novels, and plays. Her poetry chapbook is Famous Michael; her novel, Stray Son. She lives in San Francisco. She serves as a Meter Keeper, teaching meter to other women in Annie Finch’s online Poetry Witch Community.

Cindy Rosmus originally hails from the Ironbound section of Newark, NJ, once voted the “unfriendliest city on the planet.” She talks like Anybodys from West Side Story and everybody from Saturday Night Fever. Her noir/horror/bizarro stories have been published in the coolest places, such as Shotgun HoneyMegazineDark DossierThe Rye Whiskey Review, Under the Bleachers, and Rock and a Hard Place. She is the editor/art director of Yellow Mama. She’s published seven collections of short stories. Cindy is a Gemini, a Christian, and an animal rights advocate. She has recently branched out into photo illustration.

In Association with Black Petals & Fossil Publications 2024