George Cassidy Payne



A Good Kiss

A good kiss smells like nectar-filled
factories and feels like skin wrapped over
a corpse. Erupting from long-patient seeds,
it stands still in the mouth, as eyelids move
with the vaporizing speed of a crouching cougar
at a midday spring. Shimmering ghostly white.

A good kiss is petite, luminous, and stingless.
Buzzing like undisturbed bees sipping from
the edges covered with pink and emerald
beadwork, it knows figures are keeping watch.

A good kiss cries with ear-splitting choruses
and senses vibrations from thunder. Scorpions
and tarantulas scuttle underfoot, and the ground
cracks apart like crawfish shells and suckling bird bones
blasted to a minimum by the sun’s motionless coil.



George Cassidy Payne is a poet from Rochester, New York. His work has been included in such publications as the Hazmat Review, MORIA Poetry Journal, Chronogram Magazine, Ampersand Literary Review, Front Porch Review, The Mindful Word, Tea House, The Angle at St. John Fisher College, and 3:16 Journal. George’s blogs, essays and letters have appeared in Nonviolence Magazine, the Fellowship of Reconciliation, Pace e Bene, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, the Havana Times, the South China Morning Post, The Buffalo News and more.

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