The Sex Life of the Unicorn Beetle:
A Trio of Severed Prose

by Marge Simon

The unicorn beetle, or Hercules beetle, is a particularly striking insect. Women believe it to have extraordinary powers. Once acquired, the beetle must be kept away from light. Most women hide their unicorn beetles in their panty drawers. The male has a conspicuous horn that may be as much as 2 inches long, but usually less. Unicorn beetles are rare. It is not recommended for men to explore a woman’s panty drawer without first donning heavy gloves.

Charles Boyer loved cigars. None know that better than I do because I supply his cigars. He invited me over once. We sat by his pool. A little man in furs brought us cocktails. Charles emptied the glasses into the pool and dived into the beautiful water. I will never forget it. I moved to Athens and married a gypsy named Annabelle. Her mouth is very wide. Annabelle greases her torso with chicken fat when she sunbathes. She had a fine figure, somewhat like the bouzouki. In Athens, they play the bouzouki with a plectrum held in the right hand, while pressing on the strings on the fingerboard with the fingers of the left hand. You can smoke a cigar while doing this.

Suzanne is writing a letter to the president of the college. She’s mad because of the expensive outfit she had to buy to get the job. He fired her three weeks ago, but she hasn’t found a good way to tell him off. She spends most days this way, writing this letter. The floor is littered with little pieces of paper. The president of the college has his new secretary on his knee. He whispers in her ear and she slaps him gently. Outside the students are staging a protest. Something to do with the dress code.

Marge Ballif Simon free lances as a writer/poet/illustrator for genre and mainstream publications such as Strange Horizons, Flashquake, Sniplits, Vestal Review, Flash Me Magazine, The Pedestal Magazine, Dreams & Nightmares. She edits a column for the HWA Newsletter, "Blood & Spades: Poets of the Dark Side." She is the editor of Star*Line, Digest of the SF Poetry Association. In addition to her poetry, she has published two prose collections: Christina's World, Sam's Dot Publications, 2008; and Like Birds in the Rain, Sam's Dot, 2007. She won the Bram Stoker for Best Poetry Collection with Charlie Jacob, Vectors: A Week in the Death of a Planet, Dark Regions Press, 2008. A new collection, Unearthly Delights (self illustrated in color) is forthcoming from Sam's Dot Publications, 2009.