I’ve made you angry. You wanted me to
provide a service, and now that it’s over
and I haven’t shown you what you were
looking for, you feel ripped off, cheated, tricked.
But consider The Persistence Of Memory,
how when the novelty fades, it can’t help
but remind you of what your old friends used to draw
in basements with magic marker, heads
full of acid. Most artists can only see
what you saw then, can only feel that
stinging disenchantment you felt when
you realized, on seeing them in person,
that your idols are flat and crude imitations, tangible
extensions of emptiness failing to provide
the answer you were looking for. Most paintings are
small. Most painters don’t know
a thing about being or oblivion.
You could say most are just fucking around.
Let me tell you now I never claimed to
know a thing about nothingness or how
you should live. My poems, cold wax sculptures
just real enough to entice you to touch them,
like the Mona Lisa is a pretty girl
you lust after until you learn she’s not
over her high school bullies and her
shitty parents. Yes, it’s tragic, but
isn’t it also beautiful the way you ache
when she makes you remember? Isn’t it
beautiful the way the crowds gather round her
still, desperate and awed
to be lost there together, squinting
at her tiny image through the glass?
Originally published in UCity Review
I’ve been thinking a lot about the story you told me
about the cat you had growing up, how one day
you let it outside like usual but it never came home
and eventually you had to give up looking.
you said a month or so later, you went exploring
in the woods with your friend and found its body
curled-up next to some kind of animal hole
that looked like it, too, had been abandoned.
you never figured out exactly what happened.
for a long time, I wanted to be that cat –
to walk off the edge of the map and turn up later
emaciated and still, my white body a cautionary
ending perfectly preserved in the snow
like a fish in a grocery store. I had no interest in
the revenge of living, only in being missed
enough to be considered lost, a lack of closure
gushing under your shirt like an exit wound.
now, I want to know what made the hole,
want to find that mole or that groundhog
and swallow its heart, dab its blood under my eyes.
I want to become the thing that leaves just in time
and stays alive to know it, warm and asleep
while you sit on blue fingers and tell some girl
you never figured out what the beast was.
if she’s smart, she’ll ask you how long it was gone
before you even realized something was missing,
how long you really spent searching in the cold
before you gave up and went back to bed.
Originally published in isacoustic
Kat Giordano is a poet and crybaby from Pennsylvania. She is one of two co-editors of Philosophical Idiot. Her debut full-length poetry collection, The Poet Confronts Bukowski’s Ghost, is currently available through Amazon, and her work has appeared in OCCULUM, CLASH Magazine, Ghost City Review, the Cincinnati Review, and others, as well as a variety of manic, late-night Facebook messages. She tweets @giordkat and shamelessly sells herself at katgiordano.com