“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”.

Hypovolemic Fantasy, Eros, Alone

Wikipedia Poem, No. 502

w502-sm

“Evening of a day in early March, / you are like the smell of drains / in a restaurant where pate maison / is a slab of cold meat loaf / damp and wooly. You lack charm.” James Schuyler

   verbing hot 
        and heavy
like a 
lover's 
    wet mouth
after dark
       n u 
  my mirror body itself
comes 
   separated 
        skin from skin from skin from 
   skin 
torn from skin 
like peeling paint 
 from skin from 
skin from skin from skin 
from skin from skin from skin from skin from skin from skin from skin 
from skin ripped from a 
turtle's 
          shell 
         
  yr mirror 
body 
itself
comes 
paint 
       from a turtle 
   shell 
   the 
shell fear 
is blood hard
is that 
 i peeling separates
      skin from skin from his liquid from 
from skin from a turtle's shell 
the 
mirror yr mouth
after 
dark
n u fear 
the blood is 
blood coming  
  comes hot 
and 
heavy has come
like peeling paint 
from a 
turtle's 
shell 
 
    the illness 
like paint-like   
    skin from a 
        turtle's shell 
        the 
shell 
        peels
separating
     skin 
from 
skin from a turtle's shell

Gender Politics

Wikipedia Poem, No. 472

gender-politics

“If I were in authority, I would forbid advertising.” Le Corbusier

to be loved   eyes closed of pain  
it is just like you not like you nothing flat  
traced with a number two pencil    nothing vested 
in hydrangeas something more like cutting 
something black ravage    to be
loved    afraid of course cutting
a slow-covered kitchen knife    something more
we will be loved afraid of pain
its dimensions feed from perspective
to follow up     thick unguent
    carving

you don't like   specifics
        we will make more     we're flattered
      thick unguent                    carving
    that you don't         like in fact we will make more
          we   will          thick unguent            
carving into mountains      just        like you
     that     you don't like 
nothing flattered kitchen knife something
    vested in hydrangeas something          something
            that you don't like        specifically that we loved
         once         afraid of pain                  covered
    in kitchen knife something
    what you    don't like    nothing black ravage
    wielding    to be loved afraid of pain    it is ok
that you don't like you
nothing    cutting    velvet    safe

Invest in Hydrangeas

Wikipedia Poem, No. 469

wiki469

“I’ve seen thy spirit bending / In fond idolatry.” Emily Dickinson

         you don't like 
your opinions
but 
   because 
i'm 
a flatterer
     or 
something 

      i loved

         it is 
      nothing to 
alter its dimensions 
i'm 
         a flatterer
vested in hydrangeas
or 
    something black 
        and 
   ravaged
	wielding 
       love

       is that you 
afraid        of love simply because 
    i'm a flatterer
and have flattered before
  or is something black 
        and ravage
      	wielding the vest of hydrangeas
or something vested in hydrangeas
or 
        something to 
          alter 
         its 
  dimensions
         because you're flattered 
         by your opinions
or something 
      more 
like 
you
         
it's
  just like 
this

      show 
        me the altar in you
unwilling to be loved
please
show me
	and i will
	desecrate it

Rabbi Said

Wikipedia Poem, No. 465

wiki465

“Sweet Love of youth, forgive, if I forget thee, / While the world’s tide is bearing me along; / Other desires and other hopes beset me, / Hopes which obscure, but cannot do thee wrong!” Emily Brontë

there's no time to   explain there's no           
dazzle in          order to wrestle among its   
ants ants ants ants ants ants ants ants ants      
to say       not           better in the christian sense 
the jain sits under a tree in        order to wrestle 
among its    ants ants ants     
crawl          up his perfect warmth even if           
i feel no such warmth       for the gourmand           
for the essentialist        for the part of me which insists upon 
treating others with          respect 
as productive as an ant productive

         this is    the         earth's horizon — 
handsy        in control       touchy-feely frightening 
the jain     it is being in its essential parthood
i insist upon treating others with respect
as productive as          a thing being   only eyes   the thing
even if i or it feel no such warmth           for this eye 
i         feel no such      warmth   for the same     tree 
or ant in order to wrestle among
among      its ants ants ants ants

Fuck You Fortune Cookie

Wikipedia Poem, No. 456

w456-3k

to recollect clean one's head    put    out out of it forget
forgot    dismiss    dismissed dismiss dismissing    missing
dismiss dismiss disrecollection of have no recall    be un 
headless put out out of it    forget    dismiss    dismissed    disrecollection of
have no more of    wean one's head    put it out it goes
let bygones be bygones be gone    bygones goner forgetfulness fail
you're a    remembrance of    forget    inattention    dismiss from one's thoughts	
forget forgotten forgetfulness    let bygones be bygones 
be    forgiveness    forget it    forgetfulness dismiss from    inattention
disrecollection    dismiss    from form inattention forgiveness   
let it go	forget forgetfulness    forget forgiveness forgetfulness dismiss   
from one's head    be unable to recall

People Are Forming Various Sentences with Their Bodies

Wikipedia Poem, No. 455

yakyak-sm

After Ron Padgett

there is no rush dear
cognitively 
certain your lover enough 
         water tells me 
you were 
      born last month

        we've eaten too much sugar
and 
our birthday was two days enough time 
to drink
          we've eaten too much 
sugar
and our birthday was 
two days enough time 
to indict 
      oneself
         always enough time 
to 
drink smart 
      complete
dancing particles 
of 
          night
below the poetry oneself
always 
past
i'm cognitively 
certain your shoes
         but we must have
dragged 
          shit in on our 
      birthday two days 
enough 
time to 
         indict 
one's wants 
to 
     write
the poetry 
   one wants to 
         drink
      we've 
eaten too 
       much 
    sugar
and 
          our birthday was two days 
       enough

“Stray Beast” by Sarah Jean Grimm

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I cannot recommend highly enough Sarah Jean Grimm‘s “Soft Focus” from Metatron out of Montreal. The poem above grabbed me by the throat. I still have the finger marks from last night’s reading. Buy the book (might I suggest the entire Spring 2017 catalog?) and support great, living poets.

Forbidden Planet with Drooping Almonds

Wikipedia Poem, No. 448

white-hyacinth-with-ant

pupils big 
as street lamps
warming up
      
an 
attack 
of white iron radiator hiss 
father by the ramparts
that bed remember
beside a white work truck 
       his bed
inside the white iron radiator 
       his left earlobe 
  — 
  
tall 
        field
that rampart
               save 
       mending 
    in forbidden planet
      with almonds 
drooping 
    
an albino peacock over a 
small 
         sweet lamp
warming his father's 
        long 

their 
bed
beside the white work truck 
one hit 
of cedarview avenue please

behind the suburburating forbidden planet
       with almonds 
drooping 
      for 
black holes 

near station square and 
          elian gonzalez

          like diogenes' razor-cut baseball fields the 
pigeons 
and buskers take what they are given

and smile

arguing 
in their bed
beside 
     the white iron radiator 
his father's 
long 
white work truck tells me 
         one 
  hit 
    of bart 
simpson acid 

      — $8
          
      hours later
       nyu 
and extensively 
freckled

downtown traffic
masturbating 
     into 
        catcalling 
father's 
  long white 
iron radiator his
      left earlobe — 
tall 
sweet lamps
     warming 
  an 
      exotic
species mending 
over a 
      small 
field
that 
      abuts 
pigeons and overwhelming my maturity overwhelming 

in his bed
beside whiteness
stone-cut blondeness

      hair 
gelled up to an
         insignificant 
     slope
the pigeons 
        overwhelming are not validated by their quantity but rather 
      long 
   white 
iron radiators of their 
  fathers 
    
   long white 
     pupils big 
as big 
street 
lamps
warming 
overwhelming into catcalls
   
scott pulls me 
   one 
    hit 
          of weird whiteness
      stone-cut blonde
         
hair gelled into his 
   left earlobe — 

      a tall field
of rather
      long 
whiteness dotted 
with elian gonzalez
          
      or masturbing the size of an insignificant slope
     at the pigeons and extensively freckled up 

         albino peacock glassine overwhelming 
albino peacock
          glassine over a 
          small suburban-side 
  hit of bart simpson 
      acid 
       
     — $8

    college freshmen 
        and 
        albino peacocks glassine 
         overwhelming in his 
          left ear — lobes of
    tall stone
      that 
abut the palatial valley
at their bedside of white 
iron radiator hiss
they save me 
one 
hit at a time
an 
  attack of whiteness
    a jello-cut baseball sweet lamps
        warming 
       
         for 
      black of weird white 
iron 
      his father's 
      long whiteness
      stone-cut blonde
  
hair gelled 
up 
like an albino peacock
glassine over 
the small field
that ramparts
         they save money 
by drooping 
       in 
   their beds
beside 
one hit of white
pupils big 
       as big as street lamps
warm      
          
the pigeons above and 
my 
      maturing in his 
left 
    earlobe — 

tall fields
mend ramparts
       
        drooping 
        not of this valley
at 
   the pigeons on the white 
iron radiator in his father's
white work truck