From time to time, the Vampire Lady attends courses through something called “Learning Extension.” She likes CSI-inspired forensics: discovering the hidden splatters of human waste matter traditionally hidden in the vinyl curtains and stiff bedspreads of no-tell motels. She also appreciates the irony of “Business Ethics.” She does not love Sociology: why bother to divide the food groups? And, besides, where are the jobs? In class, she frightens her professors out of their second and third points and freezes any “group discussions.” During office hours, she slinks inside the awful little offices filled with unwanted papers and depressing knickknacks, where the faculty welcome her as they do Republican governors: thank God, thank God, it’s finally finished.
Cathleen Calbert’s poetry and prose have appeared in many publications, including Ms. Magazine, The New Republic, The New York Times, The Paris Review, and The Women’s Review of Books. She is the author of three books of poetry: Lessons in Space (University of Florida Press), Bad Judgment (Sarabande Books), and Sleeping with a Famous Poet (C.W. Books). She has been awarded The Nation Discovery Award, a Pushcart Prize, and the Mary Tucker Thorp Award from Rhode Island College, where she is a Professor of English.