Reanimated Lavender Granola Switchblade Nun rides again.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Twilight Of The Silent Movie Queen

The Silent Movie Queen,

Adored by millions,

Attends the opening of her latest melodrama.

In it,

She gives birth out of wedlock.

The dialogue card reads,

"Have mercy on me, a sinner."

On the screen, her famous eyes look Heavenward as she holds the child wrapped in a blanket. Snow falls as she arrives outside St. John's.

A priest takes the child inside the sanctuary and closes the church door, leaving her to sink, alone, onto the stone steps.

She reaches out one famous slender arm;

The Silent Movie Queen is known for both her curls and her clear pure waves of emotion.

The people in the audience rise and sink at her every expression and gesture.

She gathers their hearts,

And does with them what she will.

The Silent Movie Queen arrives at her apartments and says goodnight to her escort, the faded matinee idol who played the priest. She goes inside and takes off her heels and fur.

The floors are marble.

The bed is empty.

Only that morning, a slender arm, not her own, had hung limply over the side.

Her heart is like a cut glass vase,

Holding flowers with sharp stems.

She never said, "I love you. Please stay."

She never said, "I am the pitcher, painted and beautiful,

But empty without your grace to fill me,

Touching me everywhere with gorgeous sweetness from within."

Have mercy on me, a sinner.

It is New Year's Eve, 1923.

The Silent Movie Queen makes no sound as she sits down on the bed,

Knowing she cannot break character,

Knowing she cannot change the script

Because she loves the life that goes with the image,

Even though it leaves her like this,

A little ridiculous

And forever damned.

Photograph: Mary Pickford

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Unfortunate Subscription

The sister in law brought it on herself. That's what the woman told the police just after the fat one had placed his great mitt on top of her head and pushed her down into the back seat of the cruiser,

As if she were a prank snake being jammed back into its can.

The guests' faces are striped with red and blue, from the flashing gumball machines on the police cars, or from

Blood and apoplexy, who can say?

Santa bears have been knocked off the stairs and lay gaping on their backs in the front yard,

While the figures in the nativity scene appear pale and shocked.

The sister in law had been saying:

My Frank received a substantial bonus this year.

We're going snorkeling in the Azores.

Bobby was accepted at both Yale and Stanford.

We're all on diets.

Madison has decided on pre-med.

We're just busy busy busy! she'd added with a little chuckle and toss of her head, as if the cute charm of it all had invisibly nudged her slightly sideways.

The fat cop prompts:

So that was when you attacked her?


What weapon did you use?

A rolled-up Redbook. It had holiday cookies on the cover. They were supposed to depict each of the eight reindeer.


Yes. If you made twenty-four cookies, there would be three of each reindeer.

The cop writes this down, then says,

That sounds more like Good Housekeeping than Redbook.

I want a lawyer, says the woman. Then she clams up.

Christmas is over.

Ornaments and lives have been destroyed.

The Santa bears are not washable.

Happy holidays.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

To The Weaker Sex

Only a child asks a woman why she is crying,

And only a devil doesn't.

It is a fool's errand to ask a woman what she is thinking,

But a deadly mistake to believe that her silence means she isn't.

"It's all right, darling."

Please. It's filed away.

"I don't mind, darling."

You'll pay and pay and pay.

What do women want?

Do you need a map and both hands, with Sherlock Holmes trailing behind?

Really, sir,

I promise you, sir

It's not that hard to find.


Sunday, December 27, 2009

Laura Nyro, Caroline Polachek, and Me

If you've got your speakers on and you're reading this fairly near to the posting date, you're listening to "Bruises" by Chairlift on my music player. It's my current favorite song. I discovered it while watching a viral video about a baby squirrel trying to jump a wall. Nothing lightweight about this girl, no no nooooo. LOL. The baby squirrel needed a little help in the form of stacked backpacks, to make the jump. Sometimes poetesses need a little help, too. More on that in a minute.

As is well known, curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought him back, and I was curious to know the face behind the voice singing the song. All hail the all powerful Google thing. I found this picture of Caroline Polachek, the singer for Chairlift. She's the one with the microphones. ("Caroline" is one of my favorite names ever, by the way. I've been seriously thinking of dropping the family name of the family that no longer claims me, and becoming, simply "Shay Caroline." Star name for a star poetess. What do you think, readers?)

Anyway, my point. Don't rush me, meanies! LOL. When I saw this picture of Caroline Polachek, she looked so much to me like a young Laura Nyro, shown in the picture that was used on the album cover to "New York Tendaberry." Pretty close, yeah?

When I was sixteen or seventeen, I was over at a co-worker's apartment for some reason I've forgotten now. Nothing racy, c'mon now. She was an older Woman of the World, the height of cool with her own place. Ok, she was probably nineteen and going to community college. But she was what, in my little heart of hearts, I wanted to be.

Sooo, I sereptitiously scoped out her digs for clues on what such a mysterious and envy-worthy person might have lying around, so I could steal the idea. Hey, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. She had a stack of records (primitive cd's, children), and the one in front bore this very same picture of a wind-blown artistic looking dark haired woman named Laura Nyro. I thought, yes, this is definitely what a Cool Person would have, and listen to. So I went out and bought it, unheard. Envy is Powerful!

For those who don't recognise her name, Laura Nyro wrote any number of songs made famous by others, including "Eli's Coming", "Oh Sweet Blindness", "Stoney End", "Wedding Bell Blues" and others. But by the time of "New York Tendaberry" she was writing, singing and playing music that was a little less pop catchy, but filled with a deep passion and poetry.

Mama Mama you're a whiz and a scholar, too

I'm at anchor in your glow now

Kiss kiss, even as I go now...

He brings to me buckles off shingles

And a jangle from a Congo love chase;

Early bloomers made of earth and love lace...

Now I live and die and rise with my Captain

Mama I told ya,

Mama say go...

Meet me, Captain Saint Lucifer,

Darlin' I'll be there, now don't you know, don't you know"

(from "Captain St. Lucifer" by Laura Nyro)

I pretty much wore the grooves out listening to "New York Tendaberry" and soon added "Eli and the 13th Confession" and others. But NYT was, and still is, my favorite music by anybody, ever. It made me think that what was inside a person, their emotions and desires, could be made into compelling, beautiful, passionate art. It made me want to do that, too. And, in all candor, I longed to be the girl with the windblown hair and the face turned up toward whatever the Goddess was sending down.

Laura Nyro passed from ovarian cancer. But I am forever grateful for her music, which goes on, and the inspiration she gave me all those years ago.

PS--My mother used to think it was extremely strange behavior, that I liked to sit in my room with the lights off and scented candles lit, listening to "New York Tendaberry". I didn't tell her I was training to become a lesbian poetess. Yep, it was even worse than she imagined! ;-)


Friday, December 25, 2009


  • Day One. Love Object is introduced into Subject's environment. Contact established.

  • Days 2-9. Subject and Love Object exchange personal information, histories, likes and dislikes as well as abstractions such as dreams and aspirations, spiritual beliefs, etcetera. Touching and eye contact maximized. Subject reports elevated mood. Surroundings, people and objects are rated as being more agreeable than in a previous test. Presence of Love Object causes increased heart rate, nervousness and consistent sexual arousal. Interesting note: upon hearing the Love Object mentioned, Subject's pupils dilate, as if to admit as much of the world which contains the Love Object as possible.

  • Days 10-25. Subject reports difficulty concentrating, distraction, and inability to efficiently perform familiar tasks. Sleep disturbances and the introduction of the Love Object into the Subject's dreams are also reported. Absence of the Love Object causes Subject to become anxious and unhappy, while the presence--anticipated or actual--of the Love Object brings feelings of euphoria and pleasure. Any objects associated with the Love Object attain nearly religious significance to the Subject. Differences between Subject's reported and observed patterns bear little difference from those of drug addicts, with the exception of liver damage, which is not present here.

  • Day 26. Subject states belief that Love Object is "The One" and that Subject's current state of arousal and satisfaction at the presence of the Love Object will continue ad infinitum. When confronted with similar statements made in regard to previously introduced love objects, Subject questions the previous data and insists that this time results will be different. Subject cannot support this logically, but is nonetheless adamant and extremely resistant to counter arguments. Interesting note: counter arguments actually seem to increase Subject's devotion to Love Object.

  • Days 27-45. Frequent physical contact followed by periods of rest. Subject reports that her first and last thought each day is of the Love Object. Subject feels singled out by fate. Subject reports feeling as if she were in possession of a particularly satisfying and private secret. Fraternization with friends, relations and co-workers greatly diminished. Subject finds that these groups do not "understand" and so Subject increasingly seeks out only the company of the Love Object, who does "understand."

  • Day 46. Argument between Subject and Love Object, followed by reconciliation and physical contact.

  • Days 47-49. Subject submits insupportable data that something is amiss, but cannot concretely describe it. Subject uses word "intuition" and the phrase "funny feeling."

  • Day 50. Love Object removed from Subject's environment.

  • Days 51-61. Subject refuses to report, neither does she accept food or other stimuli. Subject alternates between periods of sleep and periods of crying. Subject does not work or socialize. Subject reports cardiac pain, but scans show no damage or malfunction.

  • Days 62-75. Subject's behavior erratic. Crying, screaming, lethargy, self-damage and the wearing of large dark glasses all observed. Weight unstable. Subject disinterested in appearance. Subject refuses to discuss possible future events, stating that there "is no future." Once again, Subject cannot produce data to support her statements. Subject's behavior does not differ in any marked way from that of drug addicts deprived of drug of choice. Subject again reports that her first and last thought each day is of the Love Object, but Subject's reactions to these thoughts are opposite those previously observed.

  • Days 76-100. Subject reconnects with friends, relations and co-workers. Subject's conversation frequently references Love Object. Those spoken to respond with unflattering characterizations of Love Object. Subject reports feeling singled out by fate. Subject vows never to repeat study. Subject admits own errors in assessment of situation and Love Object in particular. Subject declares self "so, so stupid."

  • Day 101. (exit interview) Subject states that Love Object still induces strong emotions of both a positive and negative type. Objects associated with Love Object remain infused in Subject's mind with a religious significance. (see file on "Sentiment") Subject views self as altered from her previous state, before introduction of Love Object. Crying, laughing and head-shaking all observed. In summary, Subject states, "I felt I was drowning in pain. I thought, 'how can I stand this? I love them. I hate them. I am suffering and they don't care.' I thought, 'I'm never going to love anyone again, because it hurts so much to lose them.' I thought I would die from it."

Summary: Subject does not die. Project concluded.


Groundhog Day

Where's my god dam doll?!?!?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

In The Day Of The Gray Cat

In the day of the gray cat,

I find my tongue--

Can speak again,

But I am as soft as a secret kept.

Controlling the weather

Is only a cheap parlor trick for a gray cat--

And controlling dreams

Is not even desirable.


Cats have already forgotten

All that priests or poems can teach;

In the day of the gray cat,

I will curl up in a crescent moon,

Unreachable and insouciant...

That's when you will want me again, in the clear and certain instant that I no longer care.


Monday, December 21, 2009


What did you think?

That succubi never get hormonal, never want to pull the blankets over their heads, never burn the toast?

The Succubus has taken the liberty

Of setting fire to

An old warehouse where yuppies live in lofts...

She watches

As they desperately try to save bottles of their favorite wines

Before the heat makes them explode.

In the morning,

The joy of this gives way,

And she feels melancholy and adrift.

She is the daughter of an incubus and a Russian countess;

She played in the snow with the sables

And slept with the wolves like a feral angel.

She enters other people's dreams

Because her own leave her in pieces, like a paper snowflake--

She never knows, upon waking,

What day it is, or whether she is made of dust or diamonds.

The Succubus has been trying to forget Chloe.

The Succubus has been trying to remember

What it was about that calm-eyed girl

That slew her and left her weak.

Always, she has slipped into love like an unplanned crime,

And always,

She has loved the one who whispers in her ear, "We will never be caught,

And even if we are,

I couldn't care."

It is shaking the ocean-floor stillness of such women

That makes her heart keep beating...

It is knowing they will leave

That makes her burn out the yuppies in their lofts...

She whispers to their blackened skulls

"Poor baby,"

And rocks them like dolls,

All the while scorning them

As she scorns herself

For forgetting that perdition begins always with a kind word

And a dream of a new friend

Looking up and smiling

At sight of her.


Merry Christmas!

Hello, dear readers. Fireblossom and her trusty sidekick Bosco here, wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas and a happy holiday season. Yes, I know, it's only the 21st. You're not going to start in about rules, are you? Thought not!

I love you, my dear readers. All of the following folk may expect the Succubus to slip down their chimneys with a hot mocha latte to be placed at your bedsides:

Cloudia at Comfort Spiral

Elizabeth Bradley at Elizabeth Bradley Fiction

Gabriella Moonlight at All Who Wander Are Not Lost!

Gillian at Indigo Blue

G-Man at Mr. Knowitall

Jannie Funster at Jannie Funster

Kelly Dickson, out charming the girls

Mac, somewhere on his motorcycle

Pheromone Girl at Pheromone Girl Grows Up

RachelW at The Waxing Moon

Riot Kitty at Riot Kitty

Sharkbutt at Advice From A Shark

Sharon Chaline at Life Is A Wonderland

Tabitha Bird at Through My Eyes

XOXOX to you and to all of my lovely readers


Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Tale Of Two Splendid Girls

Mary Ellen MacMillan Pemberton Mimms

Knew plenty of hers and a helping of hims,

While her friend SueEllen MacFarquhar-Jones

Burgled her breakfast from well-to-do homes.

"We are really such fine girls," the two agreed,

"Splendid girls,

Fine girls indeed!"

Mary Ellen MacMillan Pemberton Mimms

Was extremely skilled in the kicking of shins,

While SueEllen MacFarquhar-Jones was known

For her cunning in running away from home.

"We are really such fine girls," quoth they, as one,

"Splendid girls!

Second to none!"

Mary Ellen MacMillan Pemberton Mimms

Said, "Is it wrong, behaving like this?"

While her friend SueEllen MacFarquhar-Jones

Said, "It can't be wrong, if nobody knows."

"We really are such fine girls," said she, to her,

"Such splendid girls!"

And it's true, they were.


art by Renoir

Friday, December 18, 2009

When Water Turns To Ice

When water turns to ice,

It has its charms--

Especially embodied in

White skates,

A red scarf,

And a pair of outstretched arms.


I prefer water--

Because of the way it approaches, then retreats,

Unable to help itself;

I love the thing that can kill and possess, all in the same motion--

Not static

Not frozen

As when water turns to ice,

A memory of white skates

A red scarf

And the glittering winter in your eyes.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Fire Blossom's Day Off :-)

Fireblossom doesn't have anything poetic to say today. I'm waiting for inspiration to strike! :-)


Saturday, December 12, 2009


There is a certain beauty in a woman

That only another woman sees;

And when I see it, it is like


And it is like

The sound stemware makes when a toast is made

And it is like

Nothing else I know of.

She is perfectly flawed.

She makes me want to throw open a window and lean out, gathering my wits.

She makes me want to close that window and turn around.

She has no idea...

People will say, well, you had your day--

But I didn't.

I was buried underground

Like one of those catfish

All summer long.

There is a certain beauty in a woman

That only another woman sees;

And when I see it, it is like


And it is like

A shift in my heart

And it is like

Nothing else I know of,

Except perhaps rain

When the season has been long, and dry, and the summer is long since gone.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Killing The Darlings

Everything simplifies--

Even the hardest truths...

Given time.

Do I have to kill

The darlings of my heart?

I don't want to.

That's why I have caressed the closing door

Long and lingeringly...

Wishing for a single moment more.

In August of 1814,

At three-thirty in the afternoon,

High winds were followed by a rain of frogs;

And so even the most unlikely events

Can occur at intervals.

I don't believe in these things--


True love,

Future happiness...

But I admit that I have seen,

On wet afternoons,

How two drops close together on the pane, tend to run

Together and become



Wednesday, December 9, 2009


My Darling,

I love you 33% more than the ordinary brand.

You are artificially sweet

To protect against tooth decay.

When your love spills my way,

I am more absorbent than competing towels, and am available in these designer rolls that you'll feel proud to display in your kitchen and bathroom.

When you are near me, I report increased satisfaction, as compared with the control group.

If you tire of me, I fold up for easy storage!

Take me out again when company arrives, one recipe serves twelve.

Our love is not available in stores.

Listen to this former NASA astronaut tell you why you are out of this world!

Try my devotion in original or delicious instant.

When you kiss me, my symptoms may include, but are not limited to,

Vertigo, excitability, difficulty falling asleep, altered affect and muscle weakness.

Our love is not for everyone. Ask your doctor if it is right for you.

Try my undying affection.

If not completely delighted, simply return unused portion of product in original packaging, with bar codes, for a full and cheerful refund.

Some conditions may apply.

Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Void after 90 days.

Coupons doubled up to one dollar!

Discount may not be combined with other offers.

Call for my colorful brochure. Press "1" for details in Spanish.

Free 30-day trial!

Allow 6-8 weeks for delivery.

Hurry! Limited time offer.

Don't be fooled by cheap imitations.

Order now and receive, absolutely free, this handy wrench set.

Never shave again!

This offer not available in Canada.

Monday, December 7, 2009

The Magpie In Winter

It was the afternoon when snowflakes made a nest in your hair--

I slipped in;

I thought, I will be just another magpie!


You took out your compact and I recognized my reflection, as magpies will--

I was hiding in your hair,

My wings half fluffed;

And oh,

How warm and happy I was!

You pretended not to notice me there--

So kind...

How I loved you!


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Jello Man!

Jello Man takes on the Forces of Evil

And gets fucking creamed.

A committee is formed to analyze what went wrong and to develop possible solutions.

This committee meets bi-monthly for an hour via teleconference; it is strictly bring-your-own-donuts.

The committee issues a five hundred page report of its findings, which becomes available some three years later, but no one cares or reads it.

Promotions are given out across the board.

Disillusioned, Jello Man gives himself over to alcohol and sex.

"Jello shots!" scream the girls.

Ruined and in pieces, Jello Man crawls into the desert to meditate.

Unfortunately, in the heat, he melts altogether.

"He had no backbone!" snipes his ex-wife in her horrid smoker's voice.

"I thought he was sweet," offers one of the party girls.

"I could have protected him," insists the kindly jello mold.

Meanwhile, the Forces of Evil run amok.

Enter: Macaroni Man!

Emerging dramatically from a steaming colander, and draping himself in delicious melted cheddar,

Macaroni Man fears no one!

"Look at his elbows. He's not straight!" sniffs the preacher.

"Eww. Cheesy," says the fashion maven.

"Hoorayyyy!" shout children everywhere.

Macaroni Man, Hope of the Universe, takes on the Forces of Evil!

They have him for lunch.



Saturday, December 5, 2009


Sky and bells gray as rock doves' wings--

Solstice at twilight.

The heavy bronze and iron heads swing slowly in the cold

And what issues is not sound, but only snow and silence

Ever deepening.

Meet me at the Old Church--

Wear your hair down.

God will not mind.

I wait on the steps in my navy pea coat and white hat and gloves--

As if I were already nothing more than shadow and vapor.

I look for you, a dark red rose against the monochrome--

Mistress of all beauty, to me.

I have always loved you best

In the moment when the air turns freezing.

Can you see my breath?

My heart beats, and as it beats, I collect words from the air as if I were a morphined patient;

What issues is not even quite love anymore, but only loss and darkness

Ever deepening.


Friday, December 4, 2009

Thank You, Sharon!

Sharon Chaline at Life Is A Wonderland has given me this Wonderful Blog Award! I'm pretty tickled with it; thanks, Sharon!!!

Sharon's blog is a colorful place filled with her thoughts, news and poetry, as well as some really cool pix and graphics. Pay her a visit!

You know me, my hair starts to fall out in clumps if I have to follow rules. But I would like to pass this award on to three of my favorite bloggers:


All three of you give me double joy....your blogs and your friendship! Enjoy your new awards, ladies!


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Galileo's Daughter

Galileo's daughter looks through a telescope at the stars.

To her, they seem very feminine--

She feels that she would like to dance with them

And make men weak-kneed with desire.

Galileo's daughter pauses next to a fountain and sees the stars reflected in the water.

To her, they seem like white horses drawing a carriage--

The carriage is night and she is riding in it,

Only to stop at a fountain so that she can look in.

Her father's friends call her "child" though she is twenty-two.

They set out their hearts like charts,

And like a latitudinal line,

She splits them.

Galileo's daughter lays on her back like a boy, determined to count the stars.

To her, they are like salt spilled across a cloth which then overturns into the oceans.

She steals a sextant and takes up life at sea, the shores of which are her skin.

All through the dog days, she plays Sirius to a series of lovers;

The boys won't last the summer,

But the girls sing rondeaux

And dance in the most beautiful arrangements

Beyond the ken of stunned scientists

At their instruments.

Art by Dante Rossetti

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Dear Writer,

Thank you for your recent submission to Jaded Daffodils, the literary publication of East Central Minnesota State Normal School. Our publication receives thousands of submissions for each issue. Choosing the ideal poem to place underneath the current month's International Harvester ad is a task we take very seriously. Unfortunately, we only have space for a single poem. Not all these. Not any of these. No.

Please purchase as many back issues of our magazine as you can, in order to familiarize yourself with work that has been accepted. Also, it would make the Fire Marshall happy if we got rid of some of them.

In future, we urge you not to use red marker to call attention to sections of your work you are especially proud of. Circled exclamations ("Whoa!") are not necessary. In future, please do not submit so very many poems about your cat. While references are useful to prospective landlords or employers, our editors must decline your invitation to call your Aunt Minnie, who is certain of your genius.

We know you did not write "She Walks In Beauty." We know you did not write "The Battle Hymn Of The Republic." Thank you for letting us see them, but we accept only original unpublished work.

Enclosed find personal order of protection prohibiting you from visiting our offices should you find yourself in the ECMSNS area. Thank you for the photograph of you wearing a "Go, Ground Squirrels!" tee shirt. But still.

We wish you every success in your writing career. We wish we had a million dollars. We wish it would rain diamonds and snow cocaine.

East Central Minnesota State Normal School's literary publication Jaded Daffodils is available by post. Send $65 for four quarterly issues to Mrs. Maureen Nordsberg, 22 Black Ice Circle, Sauk Center, MN. You'll receive, as a free bonus, our annual Compendium of Agricultural Verse and this attractive tote.


James "Jiggy" Jorgensen, editor, Jaded Daffodils

Sunday, November 29, 2009


"Hold on...

Hold on to your self,

This is gonna hurt like hell." --Sarah McLachlan

There's no short way.

Move through it

Like moving through a fever--

Move through it

Like waist deep water--

Dark below,

Dark above.

The night is full of tigers.

Oh yes,

They have broken hearts, too;

Tooth and claw no more use than


Against these enemies

Whose names are





Lay down with them all.

Lay down with tigers.

In the morning, you'll rise up off their sleeping warmth

With stripes of ambivalence and experience

On your body, too.

Go stumbling back to the farm.

They'll know you are not the same.

You'll know it, too.

The night will stay with you

In every black stripe,

But when the fever breaks

And the tide goes out,

You can walk through the world as a woman again--

In the noon,

Tomorrow, or next week or next year,

Someone will see you and say,


You are so beautiful."

You will dip your head,

And once again it will be your choice

What you want to do.


Thank you to the tigers, who continue to inspire me.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Birmingham Nursery Rhyme

I was brought up right--

I carry my mother in a little box

Wrapped in cotton

Under locks.

Weebles wobble

But they don't fall down--

Somehow I survived

A little angry, but alive.

It's just that, if you poke me.

I'll poke back.

Trust me, Pokey,

Gumby that.

I'm polite.

I say, fuck off please.

I wear no ink.

I believe in grace, poise, and a well-timed wink--

I carry a sap...

But it's pink.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

The Year That Began With Ravens

The year that began with ravens

Ends with sparrows.

I think my life

Is a candle in a paper boat;

Never meant to last.

The year that began with ravens

Has tested me

In ways I can't explain,

But nameless music

Can be as sweet as a split apple

Or as bitter

As an empty room.

The year that began with ravens

Spared a teasing taste of honey--

An aviary June.

The year that ends with sparrows

Leaves me humble

With just a jar of coins.

I think my life

Is a candle in a paper boat;

Never meant to last--

A sparrow in that twilit place

Where despair and peace are joined.