End Credits: Cinematic Afterwords

Anton Pooles


...after Robert Wiene’s ”The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari” (1920)

Dislodged from the cabinet

I dance upon the worlds unbalanced surfaces.

Above the spotlights hiss

like a quire of fork-tongued devils.

This act is a vaudevillian dream

dead upon arrival—

the audience is not laughing,

they’re not even slightly amused.

They riot outside my cabinet door

with torches and pitchforks.

Poem for Santi

...after Guillermo Del Toro’s “The Devil’s Backbone” (2001)

From beneath amber water

blood rises from his fractured forehead—

red smoke

that fills the hallways caked in sand.

From the safety of shadows

he watches living versions of himself

play ball around the bomb

that stands dormant

at the centre of the courtyard—

its violet ghost passed to the man

who brought you

to this low, dark edge of life.

May Day

...after Ari Aster’s “Midsommar” (2018)

Pass your scream

from mouth to mouth.

Flowers sprout from the crown

like little fires —

bright enough to scorch skin,

to burn grief down to ash.

Lay in the rubble and watch

grief’s black smoke

rise and vanish.

Anton Pooles was born in Novosibirsk, Siberia and lives in Toronto. He is the Editor-in-Chief of Cypress: Literary Journal. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in This Magazine, Icefloe Press, Long Con Magazine and others. His chapbook "Monster 36" is available with Anstruther Press.

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