Readings in Contemporary Poetry

Karen Volkman


My hayseed harlequin
what’s a bloomer to you

and a bobbin to him?
Two grams of Melatonin

won’t put the bitch to bed.
—She’s mazing in bloody pastures.

—She’s got a equinox in the head.
Five six seven eight nine

black angels—ten twelve
fourteen eighteen fare-thee-wells—

won’t scrub the slate to static—
won’t turn the tone to knell—

kneaded and seeded and gadgeted, well,
it’s a why-you-dunnit

and a heck and a hell
and a moon-stung stutter

and a hazy hotel
when a kiss is a vanish

and a flown is a fell.

© 1997