Confessions of a Destroying Angel

Max Stephan



Like a tease,

I want to whisper:

                                    I’ve been waiting –

want to see you drop

to your knees

beaming, deviant.

I want to hear the words:


            Touch me… 


                        Right there… 


                                    Again –

feel the caress

of your finger tip –

soft, gentle, assured.

                                    And then,

I want to watch you

walk away



Though most pass me by,

on occasion it is

a fool, a trifle –

weak, innocent,

unable to be saved.

And with pity,

I try, I try, not to tempt.                                                                                 



But the cocky,

the condescending,

in their eyes I shine –

a slight lean forward,

a lift revealing the garter belt,

but not a word said, for


if you take me,

I will make this day

the day you will not forget –

I will


make you ache,

and scream,

and cry.


I will destroy you.


I will erase you.


Max Stephan’s writing has appeared in Appalachia, the Christian Science Monitor, the Broad River Review, the Main Street Rag, the Wayfarer, Kestrel, the Rockhurst Review, the Kerf, Slipstream, the Potomac Review, Blueline, the Cimarron Review and the Louisiana Review. Recently Stephan was awarded Fellowship at the Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing, noted as a finalist in the 2019 Rash Award in Poetry Competition, the 2019 Jessie Bryce Niles Chapbook Contest, and invited to write the featured story for the upcoming issue of Appalachia honoring the work of Mary Oliver (Winter, 2020). Currently he is wooing publishers with a manuscript entitled “Alice Said” – the first book-length collection of poems solely based on mycology by one author. Stephan teaches at Niagara University, specializing in Contemporary American Poetry; runs a poetry series on campus entitled “Western New York Poets;” and hosts “Second Stage Writers” – a monthly reading in the city of Buffalo, which brings together both young and established voices. Learn more about Max Stephan at: