Sunday, July 24, 2011

In the haystack I dreamed of being a dentist for you

i heard a boy in a window one night make a wish on your skin
he wished however far he may be
that he will shoot any and all of the mountain lions that ever come for you
will leave a coat built from rabbits on your doorstep for when you are cold
and when you are sick
set a bowl of soup on your sill
tap twice
and sit in the haystack while you drink it down
stay there whittling a whistle until you are sound asleep
and next to your fucking beauty of a face
set that whistle down softly
for you to kiss should you ever need him to come to you
he is chipping away at a star
trying to work it loose out of the large jaw of night
to bring it back down to your ears
it sounds like you
it has your softness
one night when the two of you were walking down the street
he heard a boy in a window
make a wish on your skin
mistaking it for something else
no mistakes were made

-Anis Mojgani

Saturday, May 21, 2011

freaking joe iconis

What an amazing, amazing man.

Monday, May 9, 2011


To be perfectly honest, looking at you is actually making me physically ill.

At this moment, there is nothing I hate more than this.

And in a few days none of it will matter and I will be forced to find something else to complain about.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Beauty Mark

They named you from Great Grandma

A children's book,

Something pretty sounding

We used to count freckles on our arms,


Any dark patches of skin from birth,

We called them beautiful


Always won this game


A speckled nose,

Flecked arms

I feel blank next to you

even with,

A spot on cheek,

gross splotch on palm of hand

Must never forget:

I will always be less marked,


Than the eldest

Thank you for this


Of this feeling I have,

I will copy down later

in the composition book found under my bed

Right now, unavailable, due to my unwillingness to leave this place

I know now I would recognize you anywhere,

Your deliberate footsteps

Your sleeping breath

I would know you anywhere,

I told you at the concert,

All we could hear was one another's grins,

I told you this

Face turned

And then you asked me to swing dance

And I think I can remember every time you've touched my waist,

And all the times I think you thought I was joking when I said:

I wanna know you when I'm grown

I felt it when you tromped into this room,

I heard your crooked smile,

Your wrinkled nose,

Your friendly salute

You fell asleep, book on chest,

and I am trying not to look

and instead I am dreaming of your having heard me at the concert

and my being allowed to wake you up

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Jonah, a love letter (from the inside)

I am tired of sleeping in the belly of this beast

It's funny here

I can't move from all the acidity and,


How very awkward,

to taste what makes him alive,

to taste it in the air

to see the inside of a thing

I can't say if I ever want to be this close again

I can say I miss you

I can say that

underneath skin,

everything is beautiful

Depending on how you look

I used to wish for the days before the swallowing,

All I was and what I hoped to be,

How I was forced to abandon my pre-belly life


I just wonder if you want me to hold you


I wonder if you still want me to hold your hand

I'd like that

Might seem selfish, but I wish you were near to me

Somehow your presence might bring me closer to God, or at least

Postage wouldn't cost so much,

and the seasickness wouldn't be so lonely

and when that final wave hits,

I want to feel cool, thin fingers on mine

It's all that means something

How strange to be praying for vomit

Monday, March 14, 2011

Granpa Car

I drive my dad’s dad’s grey, large, wide, somewhat beat up, old Oldsmobile

I don't know what year it is

I know very little about cars

But there is a pealing off sticker on the back window that says “Kenyon College,” and that means it's mine

But there is bucket seat in the front, it remains empty now, but it’s where my sister used to ride, squashed between Bubbie and Grandpop on drives in and around Port Charlotte

We used to go there for New Years

She was the eldest

And I preferred to sit next to my mother

My earliest memory of this was in Florida,

Disney World,

We drove there,

I was three,

I was afraid of the "suits,"

Those men who dressed in costumes and were supposed to be my favorite cartoon characters,

But Goofy and Donald were unimpressive, and you can't see their eyes when they do this,

It's fucking terrifying

Grandpop remarried after Bubbie died in '98

He moved to a different part of Florida

I was a flower girl,

It was my first and only time in a wedding,

Depressed that the purple dress had a scoop neck that itched,

The other flower girl was Grandpop's bride's great granddaughter

I was large and awkward in comparison,

Big curly hair,

And some sense of betrayal to Bubbie, though I don't think I understood why at the time

I did see porpoises once,

In the lake, by their condo

It was maybe the coolest thing to ever happen to me

And I had been hoping to see a manateee

But I never got the chance

There is a mezuzah stuck to the dashboard,

The yellow hat he wore to shield himself from a Florida sun sat comfortably in the back for years, long after he moved to Ohio to live with us,

long after his kidneys failed

A broken umbrella in the trunk,

Toothpicks scattered on the floor, crammed in the seats

I’ve never moved these things,

Laziness more than sentimentality, I suppose

Except for that mezuzah

I left it there for some reason, even if it got me mocked in high school

I’m overly cautious

My friend's mom once dented the passenger side door,

A doe jumped in front of me, broke the headlight but not her body

And I get lost,

A lot

But I have never once had a ticket

Never squashed a squirrel or a rabbit

And I have never wrecked the Granpa Car

We call it that

My pals from back home

We called it that when my pals from back home all started driving,

And it was cool to name our cars

"Shitwagon. Bessie. Laxi Taxi. The Edvan.”

I was overly cautious,

Didn't pass the test the first time,

But the first song I drove to,

In the springtime,

I was nervous,

Too much to sing along,

Was "The Joker," by The Steve Miller Band

He gnawed on my ear once,

Instead of a typical kiss on the cheek

And he patted me on the backside,

And told me I was getting heavy

And once, even though I didn’t ask him, he told me that he wasn’t particularly afraid to die

That he was ready

I think I reacted in the same way to all of these occurrences

“Um, okay…” trying hard to avoid eye contact,

Trying hard to block it out as fast as possible,

Hoping against hope for a parent to intervene,

To make the moment

Less real

These days

When I’m driving too too slow on the freeway,

When I need gas about as often as I need directions,

When some classic rock comes on the radio,

and I open the windows that never quite close all the way,

and I let my big curly hair fly out all over the place,

I sing louder and clearer than I was ever capable,

That first time on the road, or

that night in the hospital

when my mom tried to get me to sing a song from a play

that Grandpop was sure he wouldn’t be able to attend

I blush,

At like moments,

Like all of those uncomfortable moments,

Not just mine

What he has seen,

What the car has seen,

What we’ve shared,

without even knowing,

And what I wish I could go back and,

Do over,

And I would have listened more

And I would have laughed it off more

And I wouldn’t have been afraid

And I would have just sung “An English Teacher,” from Bye Bye Birdie

Like my mom had wanted me to

Like he probably didn’t really want me to,

But he would have politely nodded,

As sick as he was

Because he did love musicals

And he did love me

With all this knowing,

What I feel now,

I find myself glancing down at that dashboard,

(not for too long, I have to keep my eyes on the road)

And I don’t feel particularly spiritual,

And I’m still afraid of dying,

But I turn up the radio

I open up the window,

And as cliché as it sounds,

I sing loud enough that I am almost certain,

I mean

I think

He can hear me

And it makes up for it.

Monday, January 24, 2011


I find you so attractive. You don't even know it. You don't even know! You have no idea, despite the fact that you keep noticing me staring at you but then I, expertly look away real fast as if I had only just been momentarily distracted from my very important, very meaningful, big girl work and now I have to look away real fast lest we make eye contact for far too long and I get too distracted from my very important, grown up work that I absolutely have to do right now.

"She must be be so overcome by her various passions," you think. "She does not have time to look at me! She is writing about whales and the ozone, and not at all thinking about me naked. She is writing poetry of feminism and philosophy, and it isn't poetry about the mortal sin she certainly does NOT want to commit in this room full of people. ANYTHING but how sexy she does not find my patchy facial hair, my inability to keep my fingers still when I read, my completely unappealing habit of biting my bottom lip."

"She is not fantasizing about reaching over this desk, seizing my face, and making out with it, not throwing these macbooks to the ground, crawling towards my chest, tracing shapes she creates there with her fingertips. She will not allow breasts and mouths and legs and necks to drift back into place, back home, back where they were intended. Damnit, she is not picturing us naked in the summertime, she thinks nothing of screwing me on the hood of her Oldsmobile, HATES the idea of sex in the rain, outside the pantry, spoken word, jazz, alternative country and maybe a little NPR soundtracking our hot lust. Jesus Christ."

"She does not want me as badly as I want her. Clearly, because she kept looking away when I noticed her staring at my utterly unattractive jawline. Clearly she was just thinking great, not at all perverse thoughts that have nothing to do with my body and all the ways she does not want to objectify it. Clearly, she has better things on her mind than how my voice sounds when it says her name. I better pretend I wasn't looking right back at her," you think. "I better look away real fast before she notices."