Chris Semansky


We will not accept poetry about poetry.
Poetry about post-prandial encephalitis,
however, delphinium buds, garlic toast,
and hamster wings is welcome,
though frowned upon between June 1st
and August 31st, when it will
be summarily disdained by committee
members, ignorant of the wonders of technology.
We know what we like. Don’t bother reading
our minds for clues. The fossil record
does not support notions
of summer vacations much
earlier than the Middle Minoan period,
when tiny hieroglyphs terrorized
manna makers and brick builders alike.
Write about what you know.
Avoid slobbery confessions of childhood
sexual abuse, workshop exercises
in the first through third persons,
abstractions that tell more than show
quarterly results exceeding analyst expectations.
There will be a reading fee for free.
We don’t read but we do eat,
couscous mainly, prune danish on Sundays,
the usual pre-minimalist fare. No lutefisk.
Paper bathroom walls with abandoned efforts.
leave them in a drawer for a week, a month,
a mouse. Wave them in front of your dead mother,
tattoo them to your breasts, take a neurosurgeon
to a lunch of urine samples. Be sincere.
There is no circle like tomorrow.