Shoot What Moves

by Marianne Doherty | August 1, 2023

“Fire chews the heads of our paintbrushes,
burns the parts of us it touches

then eats our bedsheets up in flashes
and reduces our books to ashes.

It comes from laughter, and it catches
on your soft tongue, leaves your breath noxious,

since this is hell. You’re a young French film actress
who fell from a cliff and onto a mattress.

Watching felt good until we got nauseous:
you, spread like a bug. What killed you was softness.

You laughed as you fell, and should have been cautious,
but shouldn’t we all? Here, you’ll be an actress,

and you’ll play yourself, without any artifice.
We haven’t got props, because that’s what hell is

anyway, it’s you.
We shoot what moves, and won’t spare you bastards.” ∎

Words by Marianne Doherty. Art by Isabel Otterburn-Milner.