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All Poetry & Nothing But
Three Poems
by Monica McFawn
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Because the World is Unfit

throw it against the wall purposely misinterpret its animation to the wall (it sends it back, doesn't it?) not once but dozens of times mightaswell be playing in the dullest of ally ways those without the crates the bums the strays the potential for scavenging violence
speak the sickest sort of gibberish it can divide itself into usage rules but form again in some flooding blob wade through feel the finest the softest yes the sweetest brush past vague as always then glide into the sharpest of debris no half vision can extricate you just flailing mobilization and a number of things you were warned against if you must gnaw off a limb understand that you will be suspended (as disbelief in the theatre) there is certainty of flotation.

cower because you are affectionate with objects and it shows when you curl up with your sofa when you press yourself into a corner when you drool so openly on your pillow when you hold the railing for support when you caress a high polish or you simply must hold the weight of the paper weight

it is noticed and though you drape yourself proudly on the arm of a chair it is no escort when you forget monogamy to pursue another prop it will only hold heat for a troubling minute.

use your space they say that in the theatre rattle around until you hit the edges of everything let it shake you-the final bean in the coffee can let them hear the predictable onamonapea no different from the shake of any last remaining though it is you that is thrown to make this ping pang clunk

The Routine

When I get to a town, I begin like this. "So this is [cityname] wow what do you do on a Saturday night go down to the [local laundry mat]and watch [the blood spin off the latest killer's duffel bag] already I establish my self as the angry loner type comedian, edgy and raw or as those without humor may say very hard up. Not the type to joke about sex with the wife or guys do this and girls do that and I just don't understand the wife's ways, after 15 years I still don't. I'm more along the self-loathing asexual line, which makes the squirmy types think the microphone is my very flimsy straightjacket. For humors sake I have a shot of liquor which I very obviously "season" with a dash of sleeping pills. I do this on stage, drinks are free and I never acknowledge it in the act. I tell anecdotes about playing video games and losing jobs and getting kicked out of: bars, retail stores, apartments even my own family. These stories are hard to follow but I have a clever trick that I have picked up from stupid people telling good jokes. It's a trade secret and its coming with me to the grave that is unless my elegy is a stupid person telling a wonderful joke. Sometimes I talk about my "friends" but I mostly tell stories about what they said to me through the ouija board. They're all dead, every last one of them but they tell me one-liners from the other side. The other side has a very different idea of humor. Pratfalls are descriptions of fatal wounds and talk of the "white light" and "pearly gates" replaces toilette bowl humor. My friends say that I am still too alive to understand their society's equivalent of high wit, but that's okay by me. So I tell the most accessible joke. "So she says to me: Sometime I miss being alive, I miss you but I can't see through the white light, its blinding." During this point a man yelled: "I'd have to cut onions to cry over this bullshit" and the room laughed. That's a comedian's greatest testing ground, one upping the rowdy audience member. "But they really are dead." The laughter never broke so I never knew if it was for him or for me. But afterwards, someone said: "honestly, if you've suffered that many losses I really feel for you." I laughed and said "you should come on the road with me, I like your style."

The Over-Tightening

On rushing to the scene, the Sirens'corpse
lay drying, brash and bright the mourners

at the body velcro-ed on the rocks, despair
where is the face-up dead?

while sea salt leaches the humors out and beyond
the wind makes a flute of punctures

tumbles a kelp and barnacle bouquet starkly by
who will sing these hag note compositions now?

intones a sternum shred tuning fork, driftwood
the bow of this, the mast of that

pries the wash-up and reshuffles it into the sea
does the face bob up on its downward helix?

arms oscillate brine-bleached and laggard
screw down into the fathoms

fish schools halo round and obscure
the face which lead you here?

its whale-ish squeals and ink clouds
vibrate and blacken the ocean

the river, tributary, ground waters
right to your brackish tap?

given the inadequacy of endless peering and
no lungs left for the heroic dive

these meat hook hands rust and flail
for that sinking decayed mouth

stiffened in the shape of its final utterance,
hinting, perhaps, at the missing note?


All Poetry & Nothing ButClash of CivilizationsEC ChairFeatured PoetsForeign DeskGalleryStage
Hedonism: Theory & PracticeLetters & GlossolaliaArt of MarriageMoney TalkPets & BeastsZounds

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