This Is a Fucking Poem

By Catherine Wagner Catherine Wagner
don’t expect too much.
Well I expect you to go into the
fucking human tunnel
I’m going.
pink grimy glossed
entabulature, welted
and tattooed. Enfolded in
ropy ceiling-hangings
but it isn’t a room,
and bumblingly sliding
out, little legs of
a little girl, bum on the wall/opening
pink legs sticking out like a
hermit crab’s, she’s coming!
shudder out the little-girl
legs with a little
girl head mostly eyes, no ears,
bug brain, aimless
Send her to school
It’s cold, and where should she
go, she will eat her
legs with her mandibles
her eyes will retract inside.
Stroke her riding hood
Settle down, little
nobody will hurtcha
by breaking off your little legs,
six little legs,
if you come.

Catherine Wagner, "This Is a Fucking Poem" from My New Job. Copyright © 2009 by Catherine Wagner.  Reprinted by permission of Catherine Wagner.

Source: My New Job (Fence Books, 2009)

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Poet Catherine Wagner

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

 Catherine  Wagner


Catherine Wagner’s collections of poems include Nervous Device (2012), My New Job (2009), Macular Hole (2004), Miss America (2001); and a dozen chapbooks, including Imitating (Leafe Press, 2004). She has performed widely in the U.S., England and Ireland; her poems and essays have appeared in Abraham Lincoln, Lana Turner, New American Writing, 1913, How2, Cambridge Literary Review, Soft Targets, Action, Yes, and other magazines. . . .

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POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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