Self-portrait as Vampire | by Rachel Pittman

Not the sexy, alluring kind 
              like the ones in the movies, 
scattering sunlight like cut 

diamonds. I’ll be the monster 
              in your bed, keeping it cold. 
Let me be the teeth beneath 

your pillow, a splinter tucked 
              between your ribs. Now kiss me, 
use your delicate tongue to test 

the sharpness of my canines. 
              I promise not to bite until you 
beg me to. When thirst comes 

I need only a small taste, 
              just a drop—it won’t hurt. 
Trust me. When you wake 

in the night, find my lunar-eclipse 
              eyes glowing—waiting for permission. 
Find my lips, cool as black marble, 

tracing the slope of your collarbone. 
              Find my head on your chest, ear pressed 
against your skin, listening to the quiet 

hush-and-swell of that warm 
              ruby ocean and craving the taste 
of your salt on my tongue.

Beeper Peddle is a writer and healer living on the East Coast. She lives with her partner and their beloved soul puppy. Beeper writes about sorrows, lies, and deep loves. When you read her work, you will dip down into her heart and end up in all manner of body parts. Should you find yourself reflected in these words, it is merely coincidence; however, it does not surprise her you share the same heart. Find her at and @beeperpeddle on Twitter and Instagram

Rachel Pittman is an MFA candidate at McNeese State University, and she serves as a poetry reader for the McNeese Review. She earned her BA in Creative Writing from Georgia Southern University. Her writing has appeared in Gravel, Helix, Gingerbreadhouse, and Miscellany and is forthcoming in the Fall 2021 issue of Whale Road Review. Twitter: @rachelepittman_.