The Trinidad Scorpion is shaped like a wrinkled
valentine. Its taste exudes mudslide, the hurt
of long fortnights—kettle whiplash, Bunsen flame,
red-blooded bullet. Tongue a piece of tinder.
Driftwood mouth. Brown tongue, yellow tongue,
miscegenation of burnouts. Raw white, yolk drains
through gullet, burning spigot. But the scorpion
doesn't only sting—these seeds cross borders,
travel through sense and tissue, drill into eyeballs,
stampede the remote throat. Have courage: swallow.
Dance in all the forest fires of the future: Tingle—
dance! Mix the pulp. Snakes snap their jaws
through stomach lining. The furniture melts
and outside, the cool evening breaks your legs.
Tag the building with your spit! Each little devil
fits inside your hand: Naga Vipers. Infinity chillies.
Naga Jolokia. Taste one million Scoville units.
This is how tongues make mistakes. Your name
in lights, on stranger lips. Your lips, in red myth.
Mad Honey Symposium
Alice James Books