Dear Lilith

Geula Geurts


It is three a.m. and I’m awake.
My right hand is between
my legs. It feels good. I smell
charcoal, a burning tree. I cannot
sleep—something is smoking.
Lilith, I’m writing because I saw
a concubine in my dream. I think
her master let the townsmen rape her,
then he cut her into twelve pieces.
Afterwards, I heard Israelite women
cackling in the Canaan forests.
They were naked. They were
burning something. I still smell it.
Red in their eyes, spit on their lips,
chanting: kumi, kumi pilegesh,
rise up concubine—but there was
no answer. Lilith, I cannot sleep.
I see a man through the sheets.
I see him in the mirror. I trace
the lines of my face in the dark.
My breathing sounds like screeching.
Somewhere an owl is brooding
over flames. Lilith, do you possess
me now? Where is my beguiling
hair? Where are my wings? He wants
me on my hands and knees. All I did
was say no. Lilith, I said no, I want
my own hands. Are you watching me?
The mirror is a naked goddess. It’s you.
The glass is burning black, I smell
the trees again—Lilith, did you fly
from the garden and set it all on fire?


Geula Geurts is a Dutch born poet living in Jerusalem. She completed her MFA in Poetry at Bar Ilan University. Her chapbook ‘Where the Sea is Quenched of Thirst’ is forthcoming with Red Paint Hill Press (2017). Her mini-chapbook ‘Like Any Good Daughter’ was published by Platypus Press in 2016. Further work has appeared or is forthcoming in Tinderbox Editions, Rogue Agent, Hermeneutic Chaos, Cactus Heart, The Fem, and Jellyfish Review. She works as a Foreign Rights Agent at The Deborah Harris Literary Agency.


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