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Jan 2017 · 330
Cinderella
Laura Jane Jan 2017
the pumpkin carriage
floats across wet cobblestone
a vision in white
as light rolls in bands
across its passenger's cheek
a play of presence
and absence. She has
a new corporeal style
a magic dress
what she lacks is
potently invisible
splendour manifest
ball guests assume that
her organizing principle
must be quite regal
including that prince
on whom the strategy works well
he is enchanted
But history’s cruel
royal blood and mop water
are never to mix
when boundaries fail
a bright princess in rags
is polluted indeed
Servant life’s rough but
Actually she’d liked the rats
They’d sung together
so Cinderella
though she looks resplendent
may not fit in well
she’ll look around
at the ladies of the court
carefully because
her dress suggests
a dream which she should try her
hardest to make real
Sep 2015 · 1.2k
Lobster Shoes
Laura Jane Sep 2015
“Since pain is a totally subjective mental experience"
"we do not have direct access"
"to anyone or anything’s pain"

"but our own;"
"and even just the principles"
"by which we can infer"

"that others experience pain"
"and have a legitimate interest in not feeling pain"
"involve hard-core philosophy—"

"metaphysics, epistemology, value theory, ethics.”*

- From Consider the Lobster by David Foster Wallace

David I've considered it and
I think she might laugh if she read
that a version of her
briny and spined
pint sized
now resides in the depths of my mind,
She might laugh
at my comparison of her
to a hideous sea spider

but it’s because, as you say,
one can neither comprehend the pain
of an exquisitely tactile lobster in a *** of boiling water,
nor walk a mile in it's eight lilliputian shoes

So I am left to wonder
what it might mean or not mean to her
in her armoured yet acute exoskeleton
to have quit school and
be back to her fathers house
on Prince Edward Island.
and what I'd want to tell her is:

They might try to butter you up,
bridle your anger with blue rubber bands,
Use their wooden spoons
to nudge your thrashing, clinging arms
back into the ***,

but as we know,
lobsters can live to be over one hundred years old
and grow to be over twenty pounds in size
which is very large for an aquatic insect
and they are marine crustaceans of the family Homaridae,
characterized by five pairs of jointed legs,
the first pair terminating in large pincerish claws

I know she knows how to use them.
Which reminds me of something else you said:
"Everything I've ever let go of has claw marks on it."
A feeling I can understand
Though I'm no more lobster
than she
Re-worked from a piece I wrote earlier this year
Quotes are from Consider The Lobster and Infinite Jest by DFW
Apr 2015 · 2.4k
Considering the Lobster
Laura Jane Apr 2015
She might laugh if she read this
at the flat little version of her
that lives in my mind.
She may laugh
at my comparison of her
to a hideous sea spider
but hear me out
it could be touching.

David Foster Wallace wrote:
“Since pain is a totally subjective mental experience
we do not have direct access
to anyone or anything’s pain but our own;
and even just the principles
by which we can infer that others experience pain
and have a legitimate interest in not feeling pain
involve hard-core philosophy—
metaphysics, epistemology, value theory, ethics.”

"[Lobsters] do have an exquisite tactile sense,
one facilitated by hundreds of thousands of tiny hairs
that protrude through their carapace.
Although encased
in what seems a solid, impenetrable armour,
the lobster can receive stimuli and impressions from without
as readily as if it possessed a soft and delicate skin.”

and so

“We lift lobsters out of the bag
or whatever retail container they came home in
…whereupon some uncomfortable things start to happen.
However stuporous the lobster is from the trip home, for instance,
it tends to come alarmingly to life when placed in boiling water."


As much as I cannot comprehend the pain
of the exquisitely tactile lobster
in a *** of boiling water,
I wonder if I could
walk a mile in a lobster’s 8 minuscule shoes
and I wonder
what it might mean or not mean to her
with her armoured yet acute exoskeleton
to be back at home with her father.

They might try to butter you up
or snap elastic bands
around your oversized claws
and use a wooden spoon
to try and nudge your thrashing, clinging arms
back into the ***,
but remember:
lobsters can live to be over 100 years old
and grow to over 20 pounds in size
which is very large for an aquatic insect
and remember that they are marine crustaceans of the family Homaridae, characterized by five pairs of jointed legs, the first pair terminating in large pincerish claws.

And DFW famously said,

“Everything I’ve ever let go of has claw marks on it.”

and he's not a lobster either
Quotes are from Consider The Lobster and Infinite Jest by DFW
Laura Jane Apr 2015
PRD: What did you think of the dinner?
PREY: I really don’t know how to answer that
PRD: Did you get new glasses?
PREY: I keep having this dream where I go to touch you and your whole body falls apart right in front of me. I'm screaming and screaming but then you somehow turn into a lake. I swim in it for ages and I wake up crying because even though it was a dream there is no way to make the feeling un-real

shuffling is heard. A drawer opens and closes

PREY: What are you going to do with that?
PRD: I’m going to shut you up
PREY: please please do
Laura Jane Apr 2015
Wading in the blackening field
the bending, brittle stems threatening crackle and graze
needle and thread
june-grass
and pasture sage

Mnemosyne waits there in her sodden robes
near the depression
where the farmhouse once stood
still,
as I meet her there at the pit’s dreadful edge

and then they come,
the torrent of beasts,
spilling long-limbed from her arms in shameful profusion
at their ******* each the snarling lick of a wound
and all become a rapid, swollen crowd, yelping and squalling,
given hungrily to some grim and certain task
They nip at my ankles, my fingers,
my small florid lip

And I remember how,
month after month
the heart-shaped leaves of the split-leaf philodendrons
unraveled all asunder;
glossy and enormous
but eroded and porous before they were ever new,
yet I was sure the cleavage must serve some pure purpose,
because thats the way they all grew

First in the sun-room of the woman
who grafted them from the mother stalk
and then sold them on craigslist
they came then to the concrete apartment
with its twelve-foot ceilings
where the fan hushes them, now,
so they quite slightly rustle;
It’s breath must still be blowing on down
through the little holes
Apr 2015 · 5.0k
Thumbs
Laura Jane Apr 2015
I am with you
here in this place
scanning with cool
and radiant eyes
Causing silver haired women
to pantomime
The Thing Thats Wrong With Us:
their heads shake
and their thumbs waggle in the air
like worms.

Our thumbs irk them,
patience wearing
thin as their lips.
They are so sad for us,
for our murderous stupidity.
They know
what is wrong:

because our empty carcasses
litter their living rooms
the busses they ride
the classes they teach
slumped
in the seats where we left them.

Heidegger said
that attention creates access to the world,
And we've crept away to the edge
dangling our attentions over the inviting precipice
like the sorcerer's apprentice
unsure
of how it all takes place
but certain
of it’s awesome power.
The well overflows
and we are swept away
as the women look on
Mar 2015 · 520
sundazing
Laura Jane Mar 2015
i love your little *****
he said
My rhythm jostles them
but his hands are there
to keep them steady
Mar 2015 · 1.2k
He Means Well
Laura Jane Mar 2015
My Father, who means well, makes me lunch
A man who’s sandwiches could never be
trusted, who used the mossy breadends cause
thats how they did it on the farm but
I am the cry baby who rejects the
deadened bread, dark wilted lettuce spines
lettuce rinds, inedible, unclean
Perspiring, lovingly wrapped in cellophane
And now I’m old enough I must
so carefully control what’s
between my full, whole, mid-loaf slices,
Fret about gluten.
Jesus help me I’m so afraid of
invisible moulds and the taste of iron
in those glossy cylinders of upended campbells
tomato: quivering naked, vermillion in the pan,
like chilled organs they appeared hepatic
I’m sure the milk he adds is soured he
cannot be trusted, my father, but
forgive him he knows not what he does, I
know they didn't have much on the farm I
am spoiled like the milk, too sensitive, I
wilt, because I have become too hard to feed,
we didn't know what to do with this kind of love.
Mar 2015 · 764
Minor League Sonnet
Laura Jane Mar 2015
Saskatoon girls in their cleats coalesce
To hit hits and spit spits by the Legion Hall.
As custom, proceeding the evening’s last call
good-games are exchanged for high-fives abreast.
Scratching their bites they squint up to the blue,
towelling sweat from the backs of their necks,
they know Jesus is there to see them home.
He's in their lemon lime gatorade too,
He supervises all of the pickup trucks
Country on the dial and dust-dull chrome
In Canada’s rectangular mid-midwest,
defined and deformed by the moistureless squall
that carries the scent of the cereal sprawl
and it’s cinder-grit **** to the pink of the chest.
Mar 2015 · 4.3k
Thoughts on Forgetting
Laura Jane Mar 2015
The body remembers, though it has been
four years since the summer you shattered your
knee but still limped out across the continent
to Boston to see him you idiot and
this is the fourth summer you've placed between
yourself and the last pin and the last *****
your body remembers, though in the
torturous lengthening of fused and toughened tissues
the bad leg is finally catching up,
and the scar with its ten numb inches of
puckered track has come to fade bone white
against your skin
but it’s still stored somewhere
in your sockets or cells and when you fall off your bike you still cry
Though you’re not really hurt your body remembers
So that when you’re confronted with their engagement photo
(you didn’t even know he was seeing anyone)
the darkened garden at the Plymouth Plantation
begins to bloom up around you before you can stop it
like a seizure or a vision, and you’re there again
trespassing after him through shadowy pines
and night-damp atlantic air
to where the white chairs encircle the altar.
Laura Jane Mar 2015
seen from overhead
tributaries intertwine
seeping through the dust

tangerine rivers
honeyed, milky, candy bright
ooze abundantly

warmly encroaching
burdening the soil with their
sugary varnish
Mar 2015 · 570
Except In Spring
Laura Jane Mar 2015
I'm getting along
without you verywell yes
I am except when

I moved,       and I found,
a dusty tennis ball of
the dogs under the

couch       that he forgot
accidentally. His dumb snout
is what I do miss,

it's not you, though I
could use a hand lifting the
old blue couch, true,

but other than that
I'm getting along without you
very well as I

catch in a damp rag
flakes of tawny onion husk.
     Fridge drawer corners

     full of our old crumbs.
I'll clear that skin away,
and just kid the moon.
Laura Jane Mar 2015
one yellow leaf floats
in the blue tiled, sunlit pool
rippling the grid
Mar 2015 · 544
Brome Grass
Laura Jane Mar 2015
Make your love unspeakably wild she told me
like the textures of your nakedness
in the dripping sun and blinding water
when its late, late august
before the first damp morning
when you can’t deny
that the real heat is gone from the night.
It's ok to be sentimental if
it keeps the buzz in your ears
in this nowish spot in time
when there’s less and less
to draw you out of your nest.
There’s every excuse for this dullness
after a quick seven years
the weight of it shows in your face
on your grandfather’s heavy brow.
You both wondered
why you sometimes felt like strangers in this place
and why the sweetness of brome
can send you reeling in the dusk.
Seven years gleaned of their mornings
like so many beans in a bright steel pan.
Arriving late and later still
I felt the dawns irredeemable chill
and in the bluest of October afternoons, she said,
may your love be unspeakably wild.
Mar 2015 · 855
Skills
Laura Jane Mar 2015
Six:

standing for prayer
the corner of the school desk
thrice daily finds me

flatness and hardness,
and the fluorescent lighting
heavenly verses

it’s tuesday morning
forgive us our trespasses
and I’m told to chant

Nine:

horseback riding is
a wonderful thing for girls
it builds self-esteem


trail rides through the scrub
learning skills in the outdoors
Palomino flanks,

hard leather saddle
rolling, dazed, back and forth and
sweating in the heat

Twelve*:

vaseline vignettes
of slick and dewy couples
raw, tanned romance, all

in rapid Spanish
the love in *Latin Lover

is jacuzzi steam

all we can do is
laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh
and laugh, and watch them
Mar 2015 · 408
The Gulf
Laura Jane Mar 2015
We are essentially unknowable, she says
and laughs.
I’ve lived with the same man
for thirtyoddyears
and he’s basically a stranger.

A stranger that occupies
her bed,
her body
her kitchen table.
They eat oatmeal out of stoneware bowls
washing them over and over
traces of their spit
mixing together
in the lukewarm dish water.

He clears the sink
of the bloated grey solids
that remain there once the water has drained.
They are so similar
two magnets aligned  
as they’ve drawn closer
the space left between
grown smaller but harder.

A question rings red as a tuning fork struck.
The spreading halo glows it's ache
through the tunnels of the head
hammer, mallet, and shell
all shimmer in concert
I am awash in it's ripples
and my mouth fills
with the iron taste of rust.
There is metal in it all
in blood and in dirt
and there in the tone
as my own blood aligns redly
along it’s sharp edge
traces embedded
in the weather and in my veins
charged, polar, always pushing
at the the insulation
the condensing division
the gulf

— The End —