got the dermoid baby blues


Epigraph in Ekphrasis:

Or more stories about C-sections



I would like this poem 

to be an envoy —

Bearing a gap-toothed smile

between sharpened incisors…



“Remember, you can’t be denied.  Everyone hides.  Where is this little big man hiding?  Hmm.  Sorry, hon, we’re going c-section on you.  Oh, relax.  Nothing to it.  Look, I was a c-section myself and I turned out all right.  

Nurse, get me that sardine can top — the one with the pull tab.”

“This one?”

“Yes, god damn it.”

“But it’s rusty doctor.”

“Give it here.”

“I gave you a good dose of fugu fish tincture, a few minutes back there, hon.  That’s why you can’t move or talk.  You’re basically a zombie, see?  Just breathe as deeply as you are able — provided your diaphragm is nearly paralyzed.  Just think happy thoughts.”


“Yes, Dr. Sobrenada?”

“Play some atonal music.  Loud!”

“Not Valkyries, Doctor?”

“Schoenberg, god damn it.  Webern at the very least.  Some James Tenney tape loops in a pinch.  But loud.  And now!”

“Yeah, sister, I got a crackin’ tape collection for being 90 miles east of Iquitos.  How in the hell did you end up there anyway?  And in this state.  What are you doing traveling by dugout canoe so irrefragably pregnant.  Silly rabbit.  Well, you’re home now and relaxed. We’ll have that cracker out of there in no time…”

“Goddamnit, nurse, turn it up!”

“No use squirming, sister. You can’t go anywhere, and I ain’t no bibliolater.  Just a man full of meanness.  A misanthrope — I guess you’d say.  Take that 25 cent word with you to the bank.  Well, maybe not to the bank… take it to your shallow-ditch grave.  I aim to put you out of your misery…”

“Nurse! Incision…”

“Yeah, go ahead and scream, sistah.  The fugu tincture certainly did nothing to your vocal chords, did it?”

“Nurse, maximum volume!  Good help is so rare these days — keep ‘em when you get ‘em.”

Mmmmm… yes… let it out, hon. You sound like a drunken pileated — hey, hey listen, you know that Woody Woodpecker?  ah, well…”

“She’s out…

Nurse, who said time heals all wounds?

It would be better to say that time heals everything except wounds…”



She starts her days on a handheld screen furiously tapping words — 

into images — on gorilla glass.

She reorders the world in this manner.



Why do bombs rain on the poets?

Bombs rain down on this poet.

But this poet, he’s fierce —

explosions in his green stellate eyes — 

standing on a casino chip 

cum soap box.


When he hears mortar shells

He cusses more in his odes 

and cuts down on guitar solos.


The bombs stop mid-air

Impaled in simulacrum skies — 

Inert butterflies flayed for display — 

black and white nuggets of flower-lava.


And a carbuncular woman yells out:

“blah blah blah blah metonymy…

wah wah wah synecdoche…

I have a PhD… from Iowa, damn it!

Give me my due.”


“But this is a poetry reading,

With Gueetars, bitch!

This is Las Vegas in ever-burning neon.”


And beyond the earth is screaming

And we’re turning to ashes on a dying planet

In the waning days of Emperor Fossil: 

a quick hello to you — 

and a quicker goodbye — 

in the Anthropocene.


The Poet has the power to arrest bombs in mid-fall — 

The bombs evanesce into partly cloudy skies —

But his reading is tubercular.

His strumming atonal.

He had too much to drink.


The ghosts of misogynies past are railing

At Catullus backstage, 

like an impotent Bukowski — 

robe indecently open — 

maundering impotent in the wings



The Monday morning maunder is my worst day

Of peripeteia mumbling…

The Tuesday morning constitutional is full of vim vigor logorrhea: the words pour out.

The Wednesday wander is absolute shit…



So I go to the cupboard, ‘cause I’m an angry cuss, and there exhorting me — virtually screaming at me in 12 point bold — is some numbskull at Dr. Bragg’s ad copy department extolling the virtues of drinking straight —

no chaser! —

Apple Cider vinegar — like it’s some modern day elixir o’ life that’ll pump you up of vim and vigor — a “bracing” tincture it proclaims (ain’t no snake oil here, but strike the band up, and bring out the Bojangles soft shoe!) ‘cause it’s a gonna’ change your life!

Smooth out that existential dread, give ya’ a boner with extra “ ‘ONER ” — o o o o, you’ll go, buddy boy.  

The missus will appreciate it.  And for the misses work out the kinks in the monthly hysterias( if you know what I mean) with all types of effluvial matter that looks like dead wispy spiders floating in your drink.  

Quaff this you’ll see the ideal pick me up, and I mean pick me up fellas “perfect taken 3 times a day!” Did I mention the missus will thank ya’!  It’s the ideal!  The surreal!  Pick-me-up drink: upon arising! (heh! fellas?!) mid-morning and mid-afternoon.  

And the missus says to me:

“The best ting that happened to me in the world:


That’s what I lived for — for the last 20 years!”



final jump-cuts from the c-section bridge:






“Look at that guy on the sidewalk. What’s he doing?”

“Looking for his soul in the cracks.  Look how he burrows, drawing blood from his fingertips.  It must be a fine old soul.  I wonder if that’s what my father was like at the end?  When my uncle found him on the streets of Little Havana looking for crack.  Crack in the cracks.  Heh!  Oh, well, whatever.  Never mind.” he said.

“Ow! Oh my God,” she said. “I think I’m going to need a C-section.  This doesn’t feel right.”

“You mean something akin to omitting the envoy from my sonnet last night?  Bitch!  When will you learn?  I’ll use a god-damned fork to get that out of you!  When will you learn?”



Intersectionality– the theory that the overlap of various social identities, as race, gender, sexuality and class, contributes to the specific type of systemic oppression and discrimination experienced by an individual.

I live on the intersection of Hispanic avenue — the preferred nomenclature is Latinx now — and cisgendered male terrace;  near the fluid-class, decade-long, unemployed, heterosexual, forced-into-celibacy-roundabout.  


How’s that for an intersectional address? 

















CODA 2: 

Datta.  Dayadhvam.  Damyata.

                Shantih   shantih   shantih



(By David Shrigley, Artist/

“I’m actually not a big believer in writing books for other people… I believe in writing books for yourself… ultimately I write a book because I want it I need it…”

— Carmen Maria Machado

About istsfor manity

i'm a truncated word-person looking for an assemblage of extracted teeth in a tent full of mosquitoes (and currently writing a novel without writing a novel word) and pulling nothing but the difficult out of the top hat while the bunny munches grass in the hallway. you might say: i’m thee asynchronous voice over in search of a film....
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