LIVING BRUSH I tried to make a painting but I made this instead because ‘there are no great female painters’ and I got tired of living up to your post modern analysis Am I post liberated enough Am I post dignified enough Am I post Listerine mouth washed enough Tell me how to best be your muse and slide me through the blue paint just like Yves I know my body was made for your use just like Eve Institutionalize me by which I mean put me in a museum Maybe if ‘there are no great female painters’ I can be the first ‘great female paintbrush’ So dip my long coarse hair in the paint Press my torso to the wall Blue ass prints on canvas Sorry, did I get paint on your clean white couch I apologize if I appear bristly IS THIS WHAT A FEMINIST LOOKS LIKE PART ONE Today an old man yelled from his car ‘You look good’ and I didn’t say anything so he yelled again ‘I bet your pussy smells like AIDS’ So I said to the old man ‘Make up your mind’ because I don’t have time to wait to be defined by every passing car because holding my breath and waiting for the tub to drain never did me any good only made my fingers prune and women are supposed to be soft and Oprah told me something that I think was supposed to be empowering but when I looked under my seat I didn’t find anything and I didn’t win a free car so how am I supposed to chase after the old man to say ‘Make up your mind’ when Oprah is forcing me to pursue him on foot Where is my fully loaded Pontiac G6 You get a car You get a car You get a car Everybody gets a car HOLLOW STARS I don’t know how to transcribe whale songs but I did once eat a turkey sandwich in the gynecologist’s office with my feet in the stirrups and the smell of rubbing alcohol in my mouth. Lane from Gilmore Girls once said ‘I am risking eternal damnation for rock and roll!’ and I realized you never would. Your sympathy just sounds like pity with the volume turned up. Can you believe we were ever allowed to be so young? If you love someone, let them go. If you love a turkey sandwich, make another.
All three poems were published in The Female Gaze is Cool (Bottle Cap Press, 2015)