April 22, 2009

yesterday was spent
down in the trenche

Pauline Boty, The Only Blonde in the World, 1963

-- By Bruce Andrews

Rhythm is a vacuum
bruises are weapons
the bookshops haven’t the heart
gasp antibodies moved by facts or moved by pictures? —
systole me some husbandry in stucco savvy
provoke the passion between objects in design
immanent allowanceable deception howls enough
opining a head pump nouned on you
release the pressure on your grudge
recursively speaking, sudden or sullen? —
only triggers can be awkward, only
certainty is vintage: be glad
your internal children die, a private reference fairground
to invent appropriate developments in your past:
no wheelchair could insure you I’ll be
a monk on your mobile diffidence with the territory —
a union of nothing special
cussing threshold you’re so hostile now
to the non-rational grows no more choice
if quality had anniversaries to flatter
by information my generosity cannot keep
the book propped open feigned ensconcing
shudders to short-cut non-living circumstance
careful not to be an example of
the perfect slurpie pedigree curtails —
can you mother alone?

-- By Shelley Stenhouse

I couldn't help thinking about your penis,
that deflated party balloon, that old thin
dachshund hanging behind the dark curtain of
your pants. I knew I should have been thinking
how sad it is I have to lift you into a cab,
wearing a turtleneck in the middle of summer,
your huge voice booming out of a stick figure
from Hangman, with your draft dodging story,
your dinner theater story, your lecture
on the afterlife. Handing me a copy of your
voice-over tape, small legacy, while I cut up
your food. I'll forget about the money you owe me.
But I thought about your penis, put away in there,
packed away like a used catnip toy in a shoe
box, in the small dark room behind your pants,
where the ghosts of all the men and women you have
slept with are mourning, leaning over that long
thing in the coffin, mourning.

Love Poem for College
-- By Sandra Beasley

You hit on me. You hit on everyone.
You pour gallons of lightning punch
into a trash bag, explaining that sobriety
is just a 2 AM Waffle House away.
You are always under construction.
The earth shall be inherited by your trucks.
Every semester brings new commandments.
Your blackboards are suspiciously green.
You pop your collar. You roll your skirt.
You tell me you don’t care, then you
sneak off to the stall on the third floor
and throw up. You hit me, once.
You hit everyone, once. You
streak the Chancellor’s house.
You steal beakers from Chem class.
When you say you are sorry,
you mean you’ve left your heart out
on the train tracks again. Later
we will all wonder if you were
the best of us, but you were probably
just the most frantic. We swarmed
like fireflies in our jar before someone
lifted the lid off. We pierced the sky
with our panting, involuntary light.


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