Karen Mulhallen – Sub Rosa

Author and poem title: Karen Mulhallen – Sub Rosa Poem: When I think of you, I think of the rose not sub rosa, secretly, and not of the yoni, female generative principle, for you are mainly male though your nipples might suggest other sources of the self. When I think of the roses on Roman banquet hall ceilings,  the reminder that things said under the influence, sub vino, should always be sub rosa, then I think of the dream of you entering me sub rosa, from behind, like the five petalled rose carved into the confessional, promising that all that was said  should be undisclosed, like a secret brotherhood, a secret  sisterhood, where affairs of state are always sub rosa,  as the anus opens sub rosa for your entry, I remain sub rosa for your passage to the deepest confidence we share, covertly, as Aphrodite opens to Eros, her rose. End of poem.  Copyright © Karen Mulhallen Originally appeared in untethered Vol 3.1 Summer 2016. Also published Seasons in An Unknown Key (Tightrope Books 2017). Karen Mulhallen has published twenty-three books, and 161 issues of Descant, and lots of articles and essays on the art and literature. She completed a new collection of poems last year, The Scent of Spring. Two of the poems in this collection appeared in untethered. Twitter: @karenmulhallen Website: karenmulhallen.com untethered is a biannual Toronto-based literary journal publishing poetry, prose, visual art, and work that blurs those lines, from emerging and established writers and artists. Created by three York University Creative Writing graduates in 2014, untethered has taken the Toronto literary scene by surprise, producing high-quality print journal of polished, always entertaining work. Known for our exciting and highly attended launch events, untethered is completely independent and unfunded. www.alwaysuntethered.com Twitter/Instagram/Facebook: @untetheredmag