Spoken Word: 3 Poems by Jessie Janeshek
Palm Springs/Bombshell Falls Apart
Messages heaving blood-lipped
or blonde-lipped a Hollywood presence
a dark drink in the desert
and real pain for the sham friends
treating me worse than ex-husbands
or box-office poison.
Raise your hand if your mind
slips more than lye
you say you’re a dog too tired to think
jingle to jangle no more wanderlust.
What’s my totem or Tarot messages heaving
all my hair falling out?
There’s truth hanging, too the pre-emphasis circuit
too dense to depend.
In The Saturday Night Kid I spoke not a word
insinuating beads and microwave frequencies
and the filter was blue.
You kept carving songs of collapse
as if you knew so much of the underworld.
Live to Tell
Put your money in the dollhouse
it will say whom you’ll marry
put your money on the axe blade
and no one will care
or put your money in a dead duck
and hand it to a cop
in your rush to be eccentric an erotic blonde gong.
I cannot rush but I want that cult following
or I want to watch trash
with the devil in the bathroom
urging me toward the trails
the electric planchette.
I lock the rooms with a stone when you’re not home
the boy with bad eyes and a limp takes my ticket
shit out or shut out
or the boy rings my orange lipstick.
Put your money in his mouth
and he’ll sew a ruffled blood blouse
or a bone daydream
or the fact is there’s really worse things to have
than fingerplay long and strong
than praying to pay for it.
So much hunger at the murder house abandoned clay pigs
I rearrange the alphabet blocks
ask if this town is all slaughter
desperate for bread and physical comedy
hang on the answer
a deader grandmother haunting the trees
in my flapper beads
or it’s a ghost cow since every once in a while
the cows want to moo at the moon
and every once in a while I think you’ll kill me
to drape my middy blouse on a scarecrow.
Autumn Kiss/Meat Lust
screwball-long walks apologies for your gender
smearing pesticides on my lips in the haze
kids climbing the tree not turned blood enough
still I thought we had something
lying down side by side in hay on the traintracks.
I’d braided my skeleton planned a new planet
quick money lips and tips matched like a floozy
touched up my moody cinnasnap roots.
We said we could predict
each other’s death day the antique phonestand fallout
the foldout bar in the car
my sex-antic slant or the noose in the room
but all the human noises were in someone else’s yard.
His truck bed was full of muddy duck decoys and booze
and what demons when I rip
out this bloody heartland in my deep-blue nightie
in my half-off cape.
You say I get lucky that I can’t sustain narrative
master and slave
so I drive to the river
past the man with the shotgun
I drive in the corn so kiss me bye-bye
I’ll rise once a year
since this town is mad
for blonde carcasses dressed up like scarecrows.