http://www.albany.edu/offcourse
http://offcourse.org
 
 
 
Poems, by Rebecca Lu Kiernan

Sheet Lightning

Grinning blonde weather man in a stone gray flannel suit,
Neon cobalt eyes, wire frame glasses, eye-popping red tie,
Licking my lips I think, "I'd fuck you blind."
I shock myself at this pathetic hunger for a stranger.
But how much more intense was my knowledge of the
Whimsical one who slept beside me in the almond rice
Bed and t-shirt sheets whispering unbearable pleasures
Wetly against my neck, groping me inside him, writhing
At the whip, breathlessly whispering, "Come for me."
Pinching, trembling, crushing
Clawing at my soul, crying out my name in shameless
Ecstasy, baptizing me with sweat, saliva, tears,
Charging relentlessly with every intention of turning me
Inside-out.
Seventy-five percent chance of sheet lightning,
Uncalculable risk of actual strike.
So much hinges on geography.

 

For John In The Otherworld

To be naked with you again, your sweat on my tongue,
What could I do to you that I have not done before?
Leave you undone?
Wrench my breast from your mouth, walk away, look
Just half over my shoulder and erase.
Your slow eyes would dance against me and something
You would confess right out loud in spite of yourself
Would turn me to stay unblinkingly with you.
Your hands would cup my face and I would not be
Painting your ghost in poems, kissing your transparent
Flesh in dreams, waking in a cold sweat full of longing
And loathing, tenderness and knives, fingering your
Vacancy on the bed like a lake reflection of myself
I must fracture.

 

Persuasion

The painting "Persuasion" looms over his water bed
Nude female back in torn jeans, entangled alabaster
Male dropping a rose, left half of the closet bare, two
Drawers of the cherry dresser empty, kitchen scrubbed
Smelling of bleach and blueberry pie. Leftover shrimp
Fetuccine from last night's dark Italian restaurant boxed
In refrigerator, cobalt Mustang erased from cobblestone
Drive. There must have been signs. Soft spoken, polite
Scorpion ferrying guest across silver river cannot fight its
Nature. Perhaps this engineer in his fragile elegance
Designed a woman who could sparkle ghostlike against
Flesh, bone, chose to cross the water at any price, easier
Than pills or a bullet to the head, nine wet nights of movie
Quality sex, the culdesac people slapping his back for the
Trophy snatched from emerald neon waves, a sugar
Beach paradise. One gets what one deserves, travelling
Back in time to the Gulf of Mexico for the one that got
Away. Beware the fish brought up too quickly without
Struggle, insides explode from the change in pressure, any
Head that fails to fight is already damaged, must not be
Consumed. But this kind of seed is delicious, somehow
Has a prescience for the hunter's craving, his missing rib.
A mermaid cut wedding dress is missing. She will wear it
With wings on Halloween with a bee keeper who took her
On a single sailboat journey under a full crimson moon and
Let the pre-hurricane wind decide, moving slowly as one
Who had salved enough stings, cradling her dizzy head in his
Hands, gliding her across the Gulf, showing her the curve of
The earth as no man had dared. Pity the soul who relies on
Acts of persuasion, he will be forever sliced by one who
Waits for destiny's haphazard strike, turns against the card
Cut prophecy, this woman is a hornet's nest, flicks his tongue
Expecting honey, wrings his stinging hands as her raven hair
Cuts like glass fragments, finds his knees in an uncharted
Forest and wills the angel, "Come to me."

 

Midlife Circus

Wild eyed, trembling, as if to some maiden
Train track rescue, he drives from Tallahassee
Silver Porsche Boxter hugging low with
Compulsively crisp white shirts, khaki pants
With razor creases, a custom made Armani
Tuxedo in midnight blue, pretentious ruby
Cuff links, little red book of numbers of
Women who would vomit at the sound of his
Voice, two scallop shell wedding bands, a
Marriage license taped back together, cologne
Worn by few heterosexual men, photographs
Of children who will never see another dime
Of child support, orangewood cigars, a blush
Mermaid cut bridal gown that missed its final
Fitting, jars of Vasoline, pearls soaked in
Alcohol, Yanni CD's, nipple clamps, hazelnut
Coffee beans, eleven page prenuptial contract,
Two stone gray Great Dane pups with emerald
Eyes, four guns, two antique, one for self
Defense, one used in his second suicide attempt,
Passport, maps, lists of contacts to be declared
Legally dead in Haiti, dive-master certification
Study guide, Prozac starter kit, tarot cards.
He calls from a coffee bar, promises to get a
Tattoo, she wrote a poem, he is seventeen again,
Feels her magic everywhere.








Ms Kiernan is the editor of GECKO. Her poetry has appeared in MS MAGAZINE, GARGOYLE, NAKED POETRY, SOUTHERN OCEAN REVIEW, DUCT TAPE PRESS and numerous literary and science fiction magazines. She has poetry upcoming in ASIMOV'S SCIENCE FICTION MAGAZINE, NORTH AMERICAN REVIEW and EXQUISITE CORPSE. Her chapbook, "Sex With Trees And Other Things Equally Responsive" was recently released from 2River Press/2RiverView.

Ms Kiernan also works as a professional editor available for coaching and literary crique. If you are talented and serious, contact Rebecca Lu Kiernan directly to discuss terms.




 
Comments? Tell us!                          Back to Of(f)course  home page