This story is paired with “The Story of King Shahrayar and Shahrazad” from 1001 Arabian Nights. For best experience, download the LithoReader for your iPhone or iPad and get NonBinary Review for free. 

When a woman can make you think
her life is in your hands, her necklaces
lie in the success you bring to bed,
her sweetness waits for you,
languishes until her stories are
over, lessons are learned, the others
are forgotten, forgiven, forsaken …

when she can educate you
and you think you’re being
entertained, she’s become
the cat’s meow.

And we all know you’re waiting to have sex with her, use her in a way only a serial rapist can use her, throw her away like rot, like yellowed seaweed, like winter,

But still we believe she can make it until the end.
Still we listen, enraptured.

NBR6GhoshalsmallSarah Ghoshal’s poetry has been published or is forthcoming in Arsenic Lobster, Reunion: The Dallas Review, Empty Mirror, Red Savina Review and Broad! Magazine, among others. Her chapbook, Changing the Grid, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. She earned her MFA from Long Island University and teaches at Montclair State University.