The prince of darkness keeps a nightlight on,
Casper the friendly ghost, Count Chocula
The sweet undead, or Spiderman the lord
Of flies. It helps him when the shadows grow
A second head or look like Angela,
So white, her bodice and her breasts are one
Insipid sight. No princess for the prince
Who keeps his favorite souls in coffee cans
Along with his loose change. They make a sound
Like pinto beans or minute rice. He thwarts
His nightmares with the songs of nursery school.
Last time he was in hell, he took a snack—
A juicebox and his favorite fruit, handpicked.
Tonight he can smell ashes on his breath
And hear a jewsharp twanging where his chest
Would be if he were more conventional.
A flashlight underneath the blanket helps,
But not that much, too much to know, too soon.