POETRY READING: FRIED CHICKEN AND WAFFLES

The writers get zipped to the gigs
on golf carts like white blood cells
to a wound. But who among us asks
the hairlipped immigrant slopping up
spilt beer with a unwringable ragmop,
“Where does it hurt—you, of no nametag?”
Plastic butter packets and syrup over-
flow their waffle wall levies. Voices at the
mic are lower with holes in the middle.
Arms in the sex poems, lithe and cast swan-
neck shadows on the nowhere white bedroom
walls. Friends, picnics, white café lights. Tits
are swell and come in two’s.

 

HARD WINTER

We took it without talking about it—
every day, a new muddy bottom to lose
a barge pole to. I gave the pretty basket
with the map and magnifying glass away.
Let the ice have it. Only one person at a
time sings, and the song comes up
on us like a snake
bite, like a shiny
coin swept out
from an unlit
corner.

But it don’t buy much:
a man, a fair
weather plan, etc.

 

 

IMPULSIVE GROOMING SYNDROME

I thought I was doing a pretty good job back there,
cutting my own hair. In the moment, it felt right
enough to dis the ultimate mirror as mirage—oily
pores crowned with bald patches, slack, gawky kook
stuck in Fluff.  “Who is that?” “You.” “Yeah, right.”
Right enough in the nipple-hard moment, electric,
singular static. Doubtless, any kid with a ID card
would know the right enough it felt was not enough. I
had to lose an ear before I figured it out. Oh moment,
how you blow me. I’ve given you my whole foggy
life, and now my ear. Bitte, reveal if what passes
for enough these days, is? How many of us are there
here? How long does it take for the hair to grow back?
How long does this breed live?

 

jennifer knox

Photo by Alexa Vachon

 

Half-Canadian Jennifer L. Knox’s most recent book of poems, The Mystery of the Hidden Driveway, is available from Bloof Books. Her other books, Drunk by Noon and A Gringo Like Me, are also available through Bloof. Her work has also appeared in The New Yorker, American Poetry Review and four times in the Best American Poetry series. She at work on her first novel. Read two other poems from Drunk by Noon, on Lemon Hound in 2007. Also you should know she is an expert on Corgis.