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The Blobfish Is

A moue.
Each day he thwarts
Plod wet Tasmania
Defiance of a jelly corpse
yet lives.

 

For the Female Wolf Spider

Toeing the blade with a flocculent leg
Birthing the youthful sac
Five hundred fifteen lulus on her back
Within the silk, sipping the yolk from the egg
Undermining his life, for which he had begged
A zarf in the gut, his will but a taste
Serving a duty, then leaving as waste
Swallowed by mother — intentions carnally vague
Her shrine, a self reflection, soft yet pukka
An abode for the load, the dynasty's haven
Broken through the walls, twenty thousand knees emerge
Created in her image and perfectly pukka
Death not to a virgin, but a soldier, but a maiden
Left behind a legion, left behind to surge.

 

Nothing vexes me more —

My raincoat whispers
a swishing subtlety through
the crosswalk beneath
hurried rain on hurried
persons, and like the bus
itself, it hit me —
Nothing vexes me more
than the sounds of a school bus:
The high-pitched wail
released as it rocks
to a toxic stop,
spewing, lethal gas
from behind — giggling first
before a loud wheeze.
It takes me back to the sixth
grade (I was awkwardly
thin, legs like sprigs of rosemary,
wearing a hodgepodge of an outfit,
unkempt and boyish.
My mother had given up
on any chance of gaudy sequence
bows and pleated skirts
like those my sister loved.)
I would sit in emotional agony
with my spine pin-straight
against the faux leather seats,
holey — not in a sacred way —
but in the sense that a bus-riding
predecessor had harpooned its
dun skin with a pencil.
A penis drawn in permanent
marker plagued the seatback.
A sudden brake hurled
my forehead straight into it
and I was as embarrassed as if it
were the real organ squashed there.
Though years later, beyond
my days reliant on the crawling,
xanthous beast, I have grown
larger than my fears (getting
up in the middle of the night
to pee, ordering pizza over
the telephone, the quick
seethe of a tetanus shot),
the shrill then husky caw
of the beast still makes
the pit of my gut tumble
in clumsy, presaging recoils.
A jetting suction puckers
in my stomach — I know
that if I could peer into
myself at the exact moment
of hearing the bus’s scathing hiss
I would have braces, a bowl
cut, and tiny breasts, as well
as the nauseous feeling
of knowing I’m late, of knowing
I forgot something essential
on the kitchen island,
of knowing that this was life
as I knew it.

 

 

 

[Rebecca Muntean was born in Youngstown, Ohio and studies professional and creative writing at Capital University. She is the editor-in-chief of the school literary magazine, The ReCap, a writing tutor, and also has taught poetry to a creative writing class at Capital. She is assistant to the editor of The Merton Annual.]

Copyright © 2011 by Rebecca Muntean, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.