Dollar Blonde/Holy Crosstown



Take the L to Union Square

            code mottled and nuanced       the sun setting at seven

when you’re having an affair.


            Gentrification permits anonymity

            each girl a gypsy           with curly blue hair

                        virgin ringworm on her leg

            or walking the street all night in a silver coat

Elevator-to-the-Gallows style                    waiting for a lover

            or Greenpoint              or a razor blade.


This is a land of the hanging cloud

            the pear-shaped book of death            or meat-packing

            in any other language.

This is the blonde in the jar                 fetal beaver

            dark-lipped and partially gothic

but not enough to bartend                   in the land of hanging clouds.


            Please be a blanker game

            a heavier itinerary                    please more black velour

            and/or more AC                      a beaded purse of human teeth

                                    or too precise? A German pretzel.


All of our matches                   are about ghosts or falling

            friendless         bouncing back

a clear umbrella           blacker comedy.

                          In the mirror I watch me think

            on the train I am invaded

                        ask you to turn me over

            steer clear of closing legs.


                                                            He led me to a bad world

                                                                        of auto-body shops

                                                            dead priests and Victorian luck

                                                                        but I wasn’t in the mood

                                                            for the clear corpse of finality

                                                                        too many clocks and headscarves

                                                            would have/should have moons—







Jessie Janeshek's second full-length book of poems, The Shaky Phase, is forthcoming from Stalking Horse Press. Her chapbooks are Spanish Donkey/Pear of Anguish (Grey Book Press, 2016), Rah-Rah Nostalgia (dancing girl press, 2016), and Hardscape (Reality Beach, forthcoming, 2017). Invisible Mink (Iris Press, 2010) is her first full-length collection.


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