1. a golden blaze of hair roars down my wicked spine. i am spitfire keo. a sweetling that can breathe fire, a sovereign of an ethereal court, a hound looking for a master. sweetling, sweetheart, you say to me, day by day by day, i am adoring, i am adored, and i am a monster more monstrous than daybreak. when the sun rises, my heart sets, i live for the bitter wet moon, the luminous silver on my sovereign skin. we live in the ethereal court, now, you and i, and i, and i don't know what to say, what to do with you. the court is spun from the ether, and in it, i hold you while you sleep and let me taste your tongue in your dreams.
2. i dream about the night i confessed what i wanted more than the moon. tell me you love me, i don't care if you lie. the words from my mouth were the bitterest i'd ever spoken, and i've never spoken anything truer since. you choked me and i cried diamonds with how much i wanted it, wanted you, wanted this. love me now, love me not, love me more than you do. but you don't. you don't. you lied.
3. i've lied to you about how powerful i am. something ascendant, a monarch that's more god than living thing. it doesn't matter what i used to be, whether that be mere sweetling or not-boy-thing. now, now i am something better than a king. you, too, are not what you were meant to be. you are a sometimes-girl, a lady, a miss, but mostly a void, an emptiness, an abyss.
4. an abyss of power lies between us. you are a candybitch to my sovereign highness, but it doesn’t matter to me. it matters to you. you see Power more than you see Ourselves. two divine monsters with minds not our own, your Juniper self split into a system of different ones, each a formidable being of their own. i with my spiral-deep despair that warps the world into unrealities, into glimmering phantasms and molten gold skin, melting off bone. our realities are real to us, if none other. we two know what it’s like to live in an otherworld.
5. in the dream now, i'm on my knees, and you are standing above me. we are standing on the moss carpeting my room, illuminated by the foxfire shed by clusters of mushrooms growing on the wall and the gold light of my hair. i am collared and leashed, and you are resplendent in my amaranth and cobalt regalia.
i say, you are going to leave me someday, and i am going to deserve it.
6. before you leave, you tell me you love me.
this time you’re not lying.
7. when we meet again, in the moonflower castle i grew from seed, in our palace of celestial respite, we are no candybitch and sovereign, the castle is the home i made for us. i visited it every day, even when i stopped sleeping in our bed. the pearls of unopened blossoms bead at the edge of every doorway, the soft velvet of petal-flesh soothing to pet as i walk the walls alone. except when i got to our room,m you were there. you are there now. and you are so different, so changed, i can’t help but grin and cry.
we are monster and monster.
and we divine fall in love once more.
Xuan Nguyen is a writer and artist who does music as FEYXUAN. They focus on the intersections between transgender identity, divinity + monstrosity, and stigmatized mental and physical health. They consider the creative process to be one of making mirrors. When not writing, drawing, or producing music, they can be found hanging out with their princess of a Siamese cat, drinking cold Viet coffee, or wondering what it would take to make a work like Revolutionary Girl Utena. They can be reached through their website at feyxuan.com or on Twitter @feyxuan.