Marion Crane Rises from the Bog


After the event, forgetfulness is almost benevolence:
past a general sense that she exists,
I do not care what she is
doing somewhere. As I relinquish
all hold on her,
all knowledge of her habits,
I congratulate myself on my absence of malice
as though it were an effort to
to watch her sink, Marion Crane,
into the bog.

Like Norman Bates, who, once she was gone out of sight,
walked back to the house,
changed out of his murderer’s clothes
and bore her no ill will.

But if she comes back, bats back the bland acceptance of death
if she demands something of me,
disrupts the calm procession of days
that have borne me away
and allowed me to kill her in all but the yesterday –
if she will not accept her place –
she takes on the horror of the bog.

Marion rises from it, and the murk clings to her
so that in her lack of definition she assumes a grandeur,
the threat renewed – redoubled, because
I doubt my power to end it. She’s disturbed the peace –
her place was set, and now like some revenant
she’s back
to do me a wound
that does not come out of any context of love.

All the niceties, the constructs, how I chose to remember her,
all this dissolves in the moment she appears.
She is here, a monster who wants satisfaction.
She smiles as I back up the stairs.