seven. veiled. salome | Ashley Kellem
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seven. veiled. salome

seven. veiled. salome

Photographer: Giselle Marie

Photographer: Giselle Marie



seven. veiled. salome.

with each gyration

of your erotic dance

an illusion of man

soundlessly falls away


of this primal earth

what man has ripped out your tongue

you speak in grunts moans

heavy whispers

reduced to sex

handled with wild-eyed oogles and

calloused hands

what Hell you entered, what God you freed

the Moon bowed low, the Sun held high

and this is where Life has kept you

backseated host I remember

we called you




First Mother

Universe Creator

Womb of the Sun

tomb of all else

you held Death and Birth

and the chasm between your thighs


with the ageless sound of maniac reverberation

what tales you still whisper

what stories you still tell

in the thrusts and dips of these pulsating rhythms

these slaps, these yips

these neck-rolls, and high-kicks

one veil falls

and I find myself standing in the center of it all


and the walls alight

a third, a fourth, and a fifth

my body hovers, my soul’s on fire,

my ego collapses

I catch my breath

and then a sixth

I see all else

the heavens, the hells, the lines between them

the blurs, the blendings

the this is that, and that is this

the mergings, the pairings

the loops and swirls

the go aways, the come back agains

the transformations masked as collapses

the collisions, the undoings

the makings again

the tornado of transfusion


I see God, and I see Satan

and a Woman laughs because she birthed them both

They are Her, and She is I, and I am Us

I open my mouth to cry aloud—Wahoo! Yes! I get i—

—but Salome never stopped her dancing

her twists, her turns

her leaps, her dives

and when the Seventh veil falls, the Lights go out

truth becomes a metaphor, fact turns into fiction

the sun is still imprisoned, the moon stuck at the gates

doubt creeps in, fear takes over

mistaken revelations, misguided intuition

I knew the truth once

didn’t I! didn’t I?

the world goes Black, and I’m sent back

the girl stops dancing

and there is just the measured heaving of her breasts

the rattle of the dance

come to

its end.

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