i’d have an unpredictable, unrelated, unnecessarily long title
if i were a poem
i’d be a free verse
not quite containable
lowercased and with debatable rhyme.
i’d plot my way
around a page
like a fifth grader connects
points on a graph:
a series of jagged lines
barely united by number-two graphite.
i’d smile and swear and
spell things out UsiNg shitty codes of
caPital letteRs and
do that thing whEre I waste time and
I would settle for selling myself slightly short with
crappy consonance and
I would start with the conclusion
(use parenthetical asides)
and make confusing obscure allusions to avoid cliché
like a simile is to a metaphor.
But then some days I would yearn for the line
for the calm iambic pentameter
predictable and structural and fine
with its cool, collected parameters.
Business as Usual
There’s a place downtown
around the entrance to the underground where
the prostitutes have PhDs and
trees have been plowed to pave
the street where they buy their tease.
Go between St. Luke’s and Harry’s Bar
past the park with the tunnel of “fucks” and
phone numbers for having some fun.
Sometimes there’s a man sleeping under the slide
next to the pine that hides his empty wine bottles,
behind Jake’s liquor and the pharmacy.
Look for the sign that says Reelect Governor Ryan
pass the broken streetlight and take a right.
I’ll meet you there at five.
Life worth Living
I hope you can fall down the stairs and laugh at the thump and rug-burn hickey on your skin
can master microwaved Ramen noodles
and that you can hand-feed a seagull the hotdog that was supposed to be your lunch.
I hope you can shit in the woods,
squat over the leaves and feel the summer breeze on your cheeks and
that you can lie under the stars and try counting how many there are.
I hope you draw castles in your class notes
try to learn the guitar
and reach the conclusion that clouds are just wet cotton balls shaped like animal crackers.
I hope your neighbor clips out that article with your name and leaves it in your mailbox
that you get bullied for being her friend
and you run your tongue over your front teeth after the braces come off.
I hope you read Hamlet and Harry Potter and some things in between
and that you conclude that Jesus and Mohammed really weren’t that different.
I hope you can smile at something simply because you made it,
share it with the world
and take a picture of the results.
I hope you can wear black
and fight tears in both.
I hope you can venture alone
to your final destination.
Andrea Reisenauer is a student at the University of Wisconsin Green Bay. She studies an eclectic mixture of English, Spanish, Italian, literature, linguistics, and creative writing while wondering where her future will lead her. In her free time, she reads, writes poetry, thinks in Spanglish, and excitedly plans her next adventure abroad. Her poetry can be found in the UW-Green Bay Sheepshead Review, Cicada magazine, Amphibi.us online journal, and more. She enjoys every opportunity to write in the third person.