the four flames (after Miss Memphis 1965, the spree must end)

M.T. Whitington

the light hung shadows in a special kind of white
forcing beams to bend as the moon windowed in.
waxing just this side of one hundred percent,
figures press to the wall bringing gardens inside.
ethereal shivers spread unshackled sprites
that pivot in the wind rising like fire on flint.
the sky ends where dusk began, filling the lunarium
brimming in excess spilling over at maximum.
i fell into a brown study with perception on and off again,
floating void of course hung with the ghosts,
lost little memories that return for boast.
night shoes faintly squeak an american horror theme.
cue lady justine to the drawer igniting four flames.
from the blue a command, the lacquered music box unwinds.
lips fall tired and high pitched, frozen lucid in confessing dream.
flicker dinner scenes, one of murdered lady liz barker on old palmer, 
the walls talked through throats scream blessed for dinner,
crossed candles on stained shoulders, a toast to st. blaise table scene.
kept awake, awake all night of the four flames,
eight tiny hands clasp a famously signed place card,
aura lee still plays on repeat, scratching love me tender.
three snowdrop cases gone cold roam on classic.
rsvp for sweet lady gates preparing her french courtyard
for what time must finally come to render.
hunger moon brighter than the light of the four flames
bounced across star canvas. a coach sprinkling oil,
caged the blue canary, delivering on constant loop of surrender.
evil pageantry extinguished by command performance
dictating lady jean’s secrets. after Miss Memphis 1965 the spree must end.
unsolved encores dissolve for this fairly possessed transgender.

gravity pulls on the dark matter moving through my body,
a dark wind detector seeding his cancerous DNA in omniscient universe,
unforgiving of our recollection of misplaced confidence.
the light hung shadows in a special kind of light
forcing beams to bend as the moon windowed in.
pointing the way; crumbling facades, dinner dreams, old evidence.

On March 26th 1965, the night of the Miss Memphis Pageant, Barbara Jean Smith was murdered. She was killed outside the school where the pageant was being held.

The killing is one of the most notorious in Memphis history, and it remains unsolved. It was possibly linked to at least one other unsolved murder in Memphis.