Thursday, December 20, 2007

3 Poems by Shanna Compton

Urges in Regard to Which Girls Should Receive Especial Instruction

Regretfully I cannot let
another chapter pass
without mention
of the secret bad habits
I will be as plain as I may
handling &
in a manner not necessary
for cleanliness
rob the complexion
of rosy blood
by calling it down
toward lustier cheeks
When you notice girls
going about dead pale
with dark purplish rings
what other matter
can be blamed?
there are some girls
who claim to do it
long & often
without falling ill
But take my word:
such a female is in reality
tormented almost unto madness
by spells, deliriums
& spasms

The Offices of Women

Think of her
as kindling
informed by light
that it collects
at her bright tips
Come under
the power of
her example:
the necessity of abandon
a theme of memory
& spiritual comeliness
a blandishment
to which none can hold
all ladies

We Know She Knows about Her Elephantine Legs

I can understand trousers are comfortable
but she’s a woman.
She should ditch the blobby trousers
to hide her fat veiny legs
& make it easier to find her penis.
She should ditch the Botox
She should ditch that Puritan look
She should ditch the dude and BEINSCHOOL
She should ditch her third husband fast
ditch her asshole father
ditch her overgrown lips
ditch her personal relationship with Jesus
ditch her Mimi-like makeup &booze
ditch her overzealous manager &production team
She should ditch the creep who knocked her up
& try dating someone who’s actually into her.
She looks like a big black garbage bag filled too full.
But she did the skirt and dress thing.
Now it’s time to put on the big girl pants
and kick some ass.
How about a bag over her face and a gag in her mouth?
She should A)lay off the tanning beds,
B)stop dressing like a Vegas call girl,
C)give up on the white lipsticks,
and finally D)dig up some sturdy,thick man legs
supporting a desperate piercing sound.
How appealing.
She needs a big helping
of shut-the-fuck-up
and an extra dose of shawl or small detailing
so she can look as smart as she is.
If she’d just try a little EXERCISE.
The American People just want
to tap that feminine side
(except the cankles)
all the way to the White House.

Shanna Compton’s books and chapbooks include Down Spooky, (Winnow, 2005), GAMERS:Writers, Artists & Programmers on the Pleasures of Pixels, (Soft Skull, 2004), Big Confetti (with Shafer Hall, Half Empty/Half Full, 2004), Closest Major Town (Half Empty/Half Full, 2006), and Scurrilous Toy (Dusie Kollektiv, 2007). Her poems and essays have appeared widely in magazines and anthologies, including The Best American Poetry 2005, The Bedside Guide to No Tell Motel, Exchange Values Vol 2., Bowery Women, and the Poetry Foundation website. She lives in a valley near a river in New Jersey.