I can only get noir in the summer skull high-heeled
a souvenir parasoled blood on my hands
the wooden crib empty
the still thin-hipped girls
at the nightswim without me $2.00 for pizza
a sailor bikini
waiting for him
or Sunday dinner chicken-fried steak
the fur hat I turned to a purse.
My tastes are crass. They smell like carrion and I couldn’t jump in.
I ask the rum courage probable
to give me thunderstorms to tape the soap operas
to lay the dolls out. I bob their black hair
wrapped in a mumu masturbate with a brush.
You couldn’t control my orange-blossom hurl
off the miniature Hollywood sign
or who was the heartthrob the day we were born.
My hair holds the heat.
Sex depends on the light and I ache for the blank sun
the swampboat your strong nails and teeth.
Sometimes I’m so desperate to slip into death
braids and blue lips birds and baby barrettes
the bathtub replicates the lagoon.
But you, you were different.
Less flapper. More frippery
mouse-grey crepe, patent leather.
Your pale baby gone
and yes the house covered in blood.
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.