Synchysis for Aileen Wuornos

Content Warning: Abuse, Sexual Assault

you flashed across my screen again

& I am pulling some loose thread of myself




The words of a psychologist explain you

you killed your father over & over again

which one did you kill first

(i) Leo Dale Pittman

the one you never knew, who (the doctors
said) gave you a belly that screamed &
boiled over too easy, or

(ii) Lauri Wuornos

the one you had, who never loved you,
who beat your naked ass with a belt
& taught you to fuck your brother, Keith




When I was a kid,

I used to play with a neighbor boy named Keith

Once I accidentally shot a dart into his scalp

& I felt so guilty I begged him to hit me





I read somewhere

the police knew you were a woman by the feminine way you disposed of the bodies

(some the corpses were swaddled

all of them disrobed)

call it a pleasure kill


of hay-colored hair                  chocolate dollars in your eyes

seven were found

one worked for the rodeo & had a stutter
there was a pattern to it             nine bullets & a .22
a code / I want to be fluent       in your capture
I don’t want to learn                     to speak

I have always been afraid of what it means

to forgive

& I am scared of my hands, now.





I won’t mistake you for romantic, (or Hollywood
Christina kissing Charlize)
especially since most people survive abuse
& don’t also become abusers
to speak nothing of murder on repeat

you made it a choice

“damsel of death”

“the first female serial killer of America”

(two hundred & fifty years after LaLaurie)


Let’s admit your blonde hair made you more easily
the silver-screen/media frenzy
the press naming the parts of you beautiful
alongside the parts of you deadly





Most women will not kill
unless it is for the safety of their children
or, as a last resort, for their own lives

My mother gave me my first pseudonym:
difficult, & later, vinegar
as in what attracts less than honey

Most women commit murder by poisoning
especially if their abuser is sleeping

I spat on my father’s dinner plates
while I set the table each night


they could not explain why women                          stay


they cannot explain why they                                       kill       


a thing is studied

like doting fathers,
the scientists give it a name

they called it battered women’s syndrome

you probably know it

as the defense you could not use                                                                               





I used to want to understand why            rape had happened to me

& the best I could do:                                     cognitive dissonance
(like smoking cigarettes)
which means

to do a thing knowing that it hurts
&/or others
just because it feels good

since right from wrong is a human construct
& your brain is a machine;
it can justify anything

we must account for the pull of    serotonin
& dopamine

a body

just like nicotine





you were born in 1956

in the next town over

the year of your first murder

this vein, swelled,

in Florida

I saw your special on A&E

the night before your death

you lied

three years before my dad

I was born in 1989

off I-75


where I’m moving in August

they read from the letter you wrote to God

you confessed

about self-defense

they were people, your johns: Dick




in each death, you incriminated them

told their secret

their fuck,your body,transaction

you admitted

there was no excuse to kill these men

but what were your reasons?




here is a list of how your motives were explained to me:

your brain was sick

asocial, a lack of empathy

borderline personality

you were tired of hooking

motivated by money

& a fear of being raped again

just look at your father

who fucked all those little girls

including your mother, who abandoned you

& ultimately

what activates a serial killer internally

is called attachment theory:

without a bond to a mother-object in infancy

no one can learn to feel empathy

which is like another way of saying

to study serial murder is to look

for a woman at the root of the problem





I think you killed for the same reason

men do

it made you feel powerful

like the God you believed in

June 6th

I’d like to just say

I’ll be back

sailing with the rock

like Independence Day

with Jesus

like the movie







Little Doves

He calls us his little birds, his little doves. We do not call him God. He tells us this.

First Kiss

I’m still learning how to read:
F-O-X, S-T-O-P, B-O-Y.