La Diosa Rubia

The Blonde Goddess says

Technically speaking

I am beautiful

Technically speaking

I am in love

Technically thinking

There is always the possibility of change


One day I will be a lady toreador

In the time that I have waited in this black room, I have heard them all, amusing themselves and singing at the end of the corridor. Someone touches the latch and I dive into the full light of the day. I see the fanfare, the barriers, all the people around.

The first of your body and the last of your wine, were only the first third of this corrida. All the great repeating stories of your flesh and my desire were merely the banderillas, those little harpoon-points in your back, their colours flying to the wind, the carmine seepage of your flesh, your blood like holy wine.

In those first moments, I imagined that I had only to defend myself. But there is no exit here. There will be no defence. Gradually, I understand that they have latched the gate behind me, afraid that I will retreat.

When we were young, mere novilleros fighting novillos, small town fights were all we fought. I fought you and you fought me and no one kept us as pets because we could not even keep ourselves within the wildness of our gold and our magenta, our capes spangling with the sunlight above, catching every refraction of the fight of our love. The first passes of it all seemed made it seem like spectacle and play, harmless in its pageantry, as if no one would kill or die.

I will have him in the end, this ridiculous dancer. Andalucía, I remember you, your prairies bordered with cactus. I will not tremble before this puppet, I will catch him and his hat, turn him like the sun. This evening the toreador’s wife will sleep in grief, turning each ear to her pillow.

This is the final pass. We have regressed to the faena, we will have our bloodletting and our lust, even if it kills us both, even if we have to call upon the verdugo, waiting for the blessed severance of our spines, begging for the last long coma of talking to her and perhaps the miracle ascending, perhaps they will pardon us, waving their white handkerchiefs.

I have followed the phantoms and almost touched their ballerinas.

We are all fighting our own bulls. And standing in our own bullshit.

Work in response to Ahliya Farebrother, “Addictions, Addictions, Addictions”, launched at Laura St Festival –

By Eleanor Jackson

Eleanor Jackson is a Filipino Australian poet, performer, arts producer, cyclist, writer, gal about town, feminist, freewheeler, and friend.

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