The First Talkie
Long hair was always the prettiest.
Select the star to supersede
what was your zodiac sign
select me to say I’m home now
home down in the woods in my pink and white dress
w/ the blue bear sewn on it.
Long hair was always the utmost
strange bangs above your Arkansas fever line.
Ethics were shaky. The styrofoam Christ’s head in the creek
was a dream floating by.
You’ll say anything to anyone to protect yourself
but I should try my hands at lyrics
I should try my hands at circumstance
at fit-to-be-tied smelly stars between your legs.
Each day they push it down a little bit
and on Red Boot Road they feed the cats antifreeze.
I drink the pink punch comb flowers through my hair
make a melody of your tragedy
hunt the deer legs in the graveyard.
I understand indecision. I understand wanting
your decisions to be limited.
I understand not reading your mail
but I’ll keep coming around
against long hair in the dust dream
and I’ll want it longer
so comic the lightning strikes miles away
and I’ll feel guilt every time
at every last minute a battleground summer of greens
a snake he shot out of the tree.
Summer Sex Country Song
Hello nude nails to save me a day
and head to the bedroom
head to the attic incense and patterns
no address labels rotten potatoes.
We take a short ride as the flowers keep breathing
we swim inside the lodge fearing disease.
It’s a club I’m not a part of
It’s an under-the-pines plastic jewelry club-a-dub-dub
at the end of our road a sick cat and fox
at the end of our road an outdoor bookshelf
in a dream more afraid of the rain
in a dream I had to save the china statues
kittens in topaz and chintz.
We found a doll in a blue dress on the lawn.
We found an Alice doll wrapped in plastic.
You wanted to root through the showroom
but how short was her dress?
The answer was in there in blood
and rusty mechanical trapdoors
pink rabbits suffocating in baskets
and this summer was always too much work
w/ the riverrock grass and the bloodsucker bugs.
I feel like a gate has been closed on me
and I’d rather be bare and know more of you
and what was your dad doing in the garage
and what was my dad doing in that tent
with the centipedes?
Time of the Season
Long movie Sundays high-top witch roller skates
dark clouds around all of this
us chasing hoops out of the madcap
but I’m losing faith
and it will not rain.
We break into the house
look for the gang
who stole my old car in the dream.
I thought of genies, French kisses
other girls’ hot attic bedrooms
the paint-by-number unicorn suncatcher
the prom dress the thistle and painting her bedroom black
how one girl kept polishing her dog’s claws in purple.
I left the keys in the car on the bridge
and ran to the piano lesson
all the men who sole the car wore black leather pants
and looked like the stepfather rapist.
The car rolled on the bridge backwards
and we went to the drugstore for shots, coke, and lays
rooster roulette, Swedish fish, I was afraid
and I couldn’t imagine any ghost or any girl
or any ghost girl being important.
It’s like a religious parable
how each day we sit at the counter
drinking bayberry milkshakes, covertly masturbating
and wear matching bracelets.
Note: “Time of the Season” is the title of a 1968 song by The Zombies.
Jessie Janeshek’s second full-length book of poetry is The Shaky Phase (Stalking Horse Press, 2017). Her chapbooks are Spanish Donkey/Pear of Anguish (Grey Book Press, 2016), Rah-Rah Nostalgia (dancing girl press, 2016), Supernoir (Grey Book Press, 2017), Auto-Harlow (Shirt Pocket Press, 2018), and Hardscape (Reality Beach, forthcoming). Invisible Mink (Iris Press, 2010) is her first full-length collection. Read more at jessiejaneshek.net.