War on a Lunchbreak

What’s war? You’re not able to find
the other dark pearl earring, and you don’t really care, except:
that earring’s your brother. He’s dead,
and there was only one, you’ll never
see him again. What’s war?

Eternal countrylessness.
Lady poets writing about cock,
not thinking about gender. My friends married in Vegas
to good-ol’-boys or hipster drummers, just ‘cos they can, or
when I contemplate
starving myself
so I’d be “the bomb,” or. I’m sorry
I keep tossing & turning. My livelihood here

depends on people who’ve never tasted
war, and act offended when one leaves work
on time. Not that I ever lay hiding

dying in a ditch, but if I had, I think that I’d
know much about dry grass, the incredible value of it:
just to see the stalks
move would be enough.

I’d like to have time to type this,
but all day long they’re looking over my shoulder.
I do

feel sorry for them. What’s it like
to care so much? Talk morning and night
to a proctor-god, tidy your toy box before bed:
to get degrees, have interests –
is that the anti-war?

Is that why I can’t even read? I know there’s war all around me,
and inside there’s war: who died, who cheated,
when will she look at me like that,
what language is this, I hope no-one breaks in and rapes us.
I never see sunlight.

The sun in the yard is so
contentless, it almost heals.

It is a series of chambers
where I’m shown
what I do have: weight.
Electricity. A sense of balance. Can that be enough?
I don’t know how to end this:

a fadeout on the grass? A copout.
Something a sexy girl poet would say, like
“The terrorists have won, kiss me awake”—

encore, cock your boot, show us your boobs!
I’m so fucking tired of the sound of “sexy”

of me being sexy, muse-body
with ship-launch face:

I can’t read because I’m dying, that’s the truth,
I’d rather take in this sunlight like a dog.
You theorize your own way out of this paper bag.

war? This:
I feel the sunlight but I keep asking why.


“War on a Lunchbreak” has appeared in EOAGH.