There's something toxic in the rain. Make a mental picture of it: discreet bungalows hunched in cold arroyos, antlike R.V.'s dotting the interstate –
no one takes a picture. A fine table has not been set. In the cheap erotic fashion of cheap erotic minds
supper is served: in whispers, in kind. There: appease your ugly appetite. One should have a hobby, a taste for decay
that is the flip-side of elegance. They also pay, those who meet in motel rooms. People always mean well
when they suggest oh so delicately the smell of dampness, what things become. Sometimes just one time is enough.
Of Utmost Priority
To trespass against a building's code. The lawn yawned unmowed. The picnic sprawled without the usual
brand of wholesomeness. When did the daily deprivations begin? The afternoon
will never author a plan for you. Unravel it yourself. Take the weed harvest and make a proper roof of it.
In time there will be strength and cash. It leans out of row house doorways. The block is full of points
of reflection, chunks of glass. Picking up where you left off last too easily ends in dryness, something
prone to flame. Meanwhile, the dogs have their plot – collecting refuse, staying alert.
Defending the thinner windows is of utmost priority. An education in long-term, a universal win.
-- Jessica Baran is an art writer for St. Louis’s alt-weekly, the Riverfront Times. Her poetry and art writing has appeared in Art in America,BOMB Magazine, Harp & Altar, the Tusculum Review, TAR Magazine, the Village Voice and Weekday (Publication Studio), among other journals. In 2010, her first book, Remains to Be Used – a collection of ekphrastic poetry – was published by Apostrophe Books. In 2011, a chapbook of prose sonnets, Late and Soon, Getting and Spending, was published by All Along Press. Baran’s most recent poetry collection, Equivalents, won the inaugural Besmilr Brigham Women Writers Prize by Lost Roads Press, and is forthcoming this Spring. She holds a BA in visual art from Columbia University, New York and an MFA in poetry writing from Washington University, St. Louis. With poet Jennifer Kronovet, she co-curates the fort gondo poetry series.