“Mocha Panties” by Arielle Greenberg

locallymadepanties

You have your skinny pants that you never wear
but that are the barometer. You have your fat pants
that you wear more than you need to. You have your
period pants that are dark and thick and forgiving
and comforting.

You have your period panties.

I have a new resolution not to wear my period
panties at non-period times. I have gotten into the
habit of wearing only my period panties and pretty
much never wearing my other panties, my nice
panties. My resolution is to wear nice panties every
day, even the days I don’t think l’m going to have sex,
even on the days when l’m going to ride my bike.

Once, in the locker room at the YWCA after tot
swim class, I saw another mom who was wearing
beautiful, chic mocha panties and a matching bra
even though she had just come from swim class and
had a kid. The panties and bra looked French, and so
did the mom. I swore right there and then to wear
my nice panties every day, even though my nicest
panties aren’t as nice as those panties were.

But then I got pregnant again and never felt like
wearing nice panties.

So that was three years ago. Exactly three years and
I am finally hoping to make good on my promise of
nice panties.

Thus far I have kept my nice panties promise for
about a week and a half. It’s been difficult. Almost
every day I reach for my period panties but I haven’t
relented. It does feel good to wear nice panties,
though it pains my heart to get on a bike or go to
sleep without sex when I am wearing them.

Even when the nice panties are not two-hundred-
dollar hand-washable silk tap pants, nice panties
are a conundrum.

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If you enjoyed this poem, please support the poet and purchase Arielle Greenberg’s fascinating, honest, nuanced and insightful book “Locally Made Panties”.

Apokellipsis

Wikipedia Poem, No. 573

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“Each eloquent spokesman // praised abnegations, offered transformation, even / ecstasies —; just renounce // sex, or food, or love.” Frank Bidart

of the nave beloved in the pun
on the name calvary above cemetery
often with kalwaria zebrzydowska near kraków

the age of baroque nicknames
roam in catholic churches
imitation of sorrows

john calva chews
roman catholic skoal
a golgotha apart

roman catholic crunch
two cans used for cemeteries
the nave named for god

special services pun around the many
like fruit flies more such complexities to essence
pilgrimages to oxford to mount calvary to dialect

calvary in the nave
beloved in the pun
the roman locks hands the cross

Endless Space

ammons

“I wish I could put into words the coming-round I have experienced (intellectually) the last few years. I once despised feeling as worthless, evanescent, of no “eternal significance.” I thought only of the “permanent” outside, the revolving galaxies, the endless space, and man on his tiny speck seemed meaningless. Can I now make the shift to humanity? Can I feel again? Can my blood stir at last? I now see feeling as incorporating the intellect–I once thought them separate. Intellect is the slow analytic way–the unexperienced way to action: feeling is the immediate synthesis of all experience, intellect as well as emotion.

I ran my motor fast much of my life seeking the saving absolute. There is no such item to be found. I had known these thoughts for a long time, and they meant very little, until I experienced them. I remember the hour I experienced them. Nothing changed, and yet everything changed. Grief, fear, love, life, death, everything goes on just as before, but now everything seems lifted, just a bit, into its own being. ” A.R. Ammons

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Source: Vendler, Helen. “American Expansion.” Harper’s. Aug. 2017: 70. Print.

Hadrian’s Wall

Wikipedia Poem, No. 532

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If there were no metals, men would pass a horrible and wretched existence in the midst of wild beasts.” Georgius Agricola

of new obstacles take up or
pass
weak against surgery the leader says
he healths the senate on rest to dismantle
their bill pass it this weak vote on blood
a blood clot above a blood clot above a bill above blood
a timeless date for the rack precedes but without hadrian
clots above blood clots above a bill announce
the wall on a wall the party’s cherished goal
the signature says health
block
domestic care achieves what

Your necklace sure is SOMETHING, Dick!

dick

.”porary ok.”narration”ation is the wodrk tvhe manu
factual wrok.”cturing of the ork ation”ati ual w

VvidaD Ssheed

“Conte8mmmporary narration is the account of tvhe manufacturing of the wodrk, not the actual wrok.”

Daivd Shiiedelds

“Contemporary narration is the accsjrount of the manufacthuring of the work, not the actaul work.”

David Shiieelds

“Conttjemporary narration is the account of the manufacturing of the work, nto the actual work.”

David Shiields

“Contemporary narration is the account of the manufacturing of the work, not the actual work.”

David Shields

Have you ever heard of Piero Manzoni?

“I should like all artists to sell their fingerprints, or else stage competitions to see who can draw the longest line or sell their shit in tins. The fingerprint is the only sign of the personality that can be accepted: if collectors want something intimate, really personal to the artist, there’s the artist’s own shit, that is really his.” Piero Manzoni

Oh, honey… Who can deprive a word of its meaning? Do you claim the words when you arrange them? Do you borrow them? Lease them? Leash them? How do you own them, particularly?

Have you ever heard of Piero Manzoni?

You are a vector. That’s all. I am a vector, too. The second you say something is beautiful, or a poem, or art, it becomes that. It’s that simple. Anything else is violent colonialism. Stricture.

This is what post-modernism is about. And by post-modernism, I just mean a movement projected forever forward into space. Like a light never dying. Sure, you’ll stop perceiving it at some point, but your explication of your perception is just limiting the reality of that object. Those words ever only meant anything to you. What happens to them as they super-ball around the room is exactly as irrelevant and as cosmically important as the words (objectively) and you (also objectively.)

I poop on a plate and present it proudly as art, it’s art. I put your words in a grinder and call it a poem, it’s a poem. Nowadays, it’s all just a matter of will, marketing and polish. Meaning is expressed by how words relate to each other in the reader’s mind, not in the poet’s mind.

We’ve (I’ve) been doing this for years (times infinity) does the practice (product) gain meaning because it’s remembered? Remembered to what extent? To what ends? Because one can quote it? Because it has generational weight? Because it effects policy change? Because it puts one smile on one face for one fleeting moment? Because it locks one professor into her peach tenure track?

Ever wonder why Wittgenstein ended up designing doorknobs?

(I love you, btw, as a person who is interested in poetry. I’m not grumbling here, just twisting my own nipples to get a bit of magma flowing.)

Cause Trouble in the Yard

Wikipedia Poem, No. 521

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“With the social consciousness wakened, the average individual may learn to refuse the ‘honor’ of being the bloodhound of the law. He may cease to persecute, despise, and mistrust the social offender, and give him a chance to live and breathe among his fellows.” Emma Goldman

       tent dawn as my tent of a new day as my      tent          of a new day as
      through the se sun is       rising aboutrustling about sporadically
 announces the air is          cool and begin to           adjust    the air     is 
rising aboutde   
my tent i see my tent sporadically announces through the se
 air is rising aboutdjust the faint sporadically announces through the
        air         is rising abouthrough the s my tent sporadically announces
 the faint           scent i see my tent sporadically announces through the s
 eyes open        and crisp and         begin to adjust the sis rising aboutde
 my tent of     a new day as my tent of a         new day as the air is
    rising aboutair   as my tent dawn as my   eyes open      and     crisp and
 crisp and begin    to adjust the sin his own shelter rustling aboutide my
         eyes open and          begin to adjust the wildlife outside my tent 
of    a new          day as my        tent          of           a new day as
       my tent dawn as         the air is rising the ster rustling the srough
 the sun is rising    about scent dawn as           my tent scent scent dawn
 as my tent scent of hickory wafts through the sun is rising aboutde my tent
 sporadically         announces      through the air       is rising
         aboutde      my tent dawn      as my tent of a new day as my eyes
 open and crisp           and crisp and    crisp and          crisp and crisp
        and crisp and crisp and crisp and begin to adjust the faint sporadically
 announces the srough the air as i emerge           from my tent of hickory
 wafts      through the air is rising aboutdjust the faint sporadically
   announces the faint         sporadically announces           through the sin
 his own shelter rustling aboutrustling aboutsun         is rising aboutwildlife
 outside my eyes open and crisp and crisp   and      crisp        and
          begin to adjust       the srough the wildlife outside my tent dawn
         as through the air as           my tent scent sporadically announces
 the s        eyes open and crisp and crisp and        crisp         and crisp
 and crisp and       begin to           adjust the sun is rising aboute wildlife
 outside my tent of a new day as my eyes open and      begin to adjust the s
         my tent sporadically   announces           the sun    is rising
 aboutsee my tent dawn as my tent dawn    as the faint sporadically announces
 through the sis rising aboutent sporadically announces the sanate amid
 a semi-silent sporadically announces the air is           cool and crisp and
          crisp and       crisp and crisp and crisp and crisp      and crisp
 and begin to adjust the      sun is    rising aboutstart           of a     
new day as my eyes open and begin to adjust the faint sporadically announces
 through the sun is           rising abo

Muhammad Ali Jinnah

Wikipedia Poem, No. 518

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“There was a blue rug on the floor of her room, one chair, one chest, and a narrow bed. Stockings hung in the bathroom. A curious luminosity from the garden, where a lush red magnolia peeked in through an open shutter. Sometimes at dawn the gulls would come and walk busily about on her windowsills, jerking their little bodies like pigeons in sunlight. She began undressing immediately, while he murmured stray strands of information in warning tones, about the cellular panic soon to inundate the world. ‘Madness. It’s pure madness. They’ve broken the locking system which gives form to matter… My dear Esmerelda, they are about to overthrow the principle of creation itself, dissolve the lovely structured essences of nature until only chaos prevails. ‘” from “Antlers in the Treetops” by Ron Padgett and Tom Veitch

dead
   resting ice 
   daily and loved 

you sleep without words 
   will all the mottles claim 
   staying did nothing   about straying
 
without all the uncontrollable 
   head space 
   beside takeout ambulance words

will the large black supple magazines 
   sunglass in the night sun   kabloom
   swiftly he needs to know

how small is this husbandry
   in the supermodels brain of god 
   it is not dependable all this blue flailing

for medicine beef commercial value? 
   what quaint earnest wanting to survive
   as one of my ears my ass into the thought's claim

it's intensely leashed with expensive exception 
   action i couldn't have known
   how i would act in the future tense 

new paltz then as three-headed corporal air 
   perpetual tumble machine between car frame 
   & car frame the fragmentalist's dead of tiredness

Dining Rooms Don’t Dine (A Discussion on Health Care in America)

Wikipedia Poem, No. 512

“In using a certain expression to refer someone to something, you are trying to get them, via the fact that you are using that expression, to think of it as what you intend them to think of.” from Kent Bach’s “What Does it Take to Refer?”

governments don't 
don't govern men america 
must precisely shame our nation 
into contemporary amazon
american culture antagonistic stone 
      glow health 
  care sizzling
republic 
swing together 
    with the future of word america
tyranny woolcapped proposal revolution 
overthrow the 
      glue 
   that choice of 
         false rule be it
      tolerable tolerable 
      tolerable tolerable 
    tolerable crush 
tolerable crescendo
be it touching my tolerable hand