Kristen DayKristen Day is an artist/writer living in Albany, NY. In the visual arts she enjoys painting, drawing, photography and particularly using all these mediums in collage. She has been attending various writing workshops affiliated with International Women’s Writing Guild for some time, and, more recently, has been attending many local poetry readings/open mics with much delight in the ingenuity and artistry she has encountered there.

POEMS

 

 

AMPUTATION

I had to amputate that thing called love
because hunger isn’t satisfied with tomorrow
and today only increases the appetite
the stomach swells stretches pokes holes in itself
I cough up old lovers
and see for them for the first time
pale pieces of promises and rancid bits of ecstasy
what the body rejects
must be rejected
the body is a temple
majestic and eerie
the old wood is crying because nature reminded it
it’s still alive
it’s wailing is only heard by creatures who can give no comfort
I wish loneliness killed
instead of crippled

 

RED YELLOW GREEN

Many Vietnam Veterans organizations use the colors red, yellow and green on their flags, banners, etc. This is to represent the colors on the ribbon of the Vietnam Service Medal.

Red, white and blue became
red, yellow and green
blue
blue like the serenity of oceans rearing up into skies
blue to green
like denim to fatigues
blue to green
like the family station wagon to canvas-covered trucks
all this fucking green
not brilliant life-giving green
but indifferent man-made green
white
white like all the possibilities of crisp paper waiting for scribbles
white to yellow
like teeth tainted from smokes coffee vomit
white to yellow
like the faces of hometown USA to the faces of the villages of South East Asia
white to yellow
like letters from home carried next to foul sweat-drenched skin
red
red like flushed faces drunk on life’s affirmations
red fell into black
into a nightmare of dreamless sleep
and from black rose red again
red like screaming faces briefly lit in midnight battle
red like ribbons of guts inside-out
rages of red
but who to be red at?
When he comes home
parents and friends speak to him in red, white and blue
the TV broadcasts in red, white and blue
the streets are paved with red, white and blue
he must be blind
he only sees red yellow green.

 

SHARING THE LOVE

a train is chased by a storm into the dusk

and the city pulls her children in
like chicks beneath the scurry of a hen

thin and sweet…the voice of a women
raises above the clammer of traffic
whispering….”stay with me”

in a broken flat a man curls his body around a bottle
listens intently to the rain compete
with the train upon the tracks

the whole world is hushed though an open window
as a mother lulls her child to sleep

an old house still lives
tucked between sky scrapers

in the curve of his dreaming wife
a husband finds sudden comfort
woken from a childhood memory that he long forgot

the whole world revolves with the ceiling fan

the dream is yours and the lips are mine
the miracle ours:
how we still find each other in the night

 

PHOBIC

all faces have a voice
but not all voices have a face
coalesce into a furious barnyard chatter
loud loud LOUD
LOUDER LOUDEST
flesh and bone around the ears
gain density
threaten to crush the skull
all noises produce thoughts
but not all thoughts produce noise
holler whisper laugh
think worry dread
once in a box with walls made of sound
we are now one in this cacophony of earsplitting images
that do not breath but bleed furiously into
the spaces between casual conversation and social desire
the faces smile and frown in manic finger-snaps
the voices moan like wounded trees

 

PICK A POEM

lamenting depressing rotting death poem
surrounded-by-morons Knock!-Knock! HELLO??? well-duh! poem
screaming ranting raving out-of-control blow-it-out-your-ass poem
philosophical psychological why-are-we-here? where-are-we-going?
what-the-fuck? poem
bible-beating apocalyptic can-I-get-an-Amen! poem
God-Bless-America let’s-go-get-em storm-the-beach Duke-Wayne war poem
drug-induced alcoholic 20-different-directions not-gonna-make-sense-in-
the-morning poem
paranoid government-conspiring aluminum-hat-wearing X-files-addict-
freak poem
soft-rock-lyrical puke-inducing pathetic love poem
psychopathic been-rejected I-fucking-hate-you ex-love poem
red-hot horny multi-orgasmic oh-baby one-night-stand poem
shifty-eyed nasty wanna-come-back-to-my-place?-by-the-way-I-live-in-
the-shed-behind-my-parent’s-house creepy poem
bitchy women-are-from-Venus men-are-from-tile-scum guys-suck poem
is-she-on-the-rag-or-in-need-of-lithium? women-suck poem
mixed-up medicated I’m-crazy-and-I-know-it poem
just-for-mother-fucking-shock lick-my-asshole you-nasty-ass-fugly-cunt poem
untitled unfinished going-nowhere boring poem
analytical grocery-listed poem about the poem

 

A WEDNESDAY VISIT ON SATURDAY OR SUNDAY

How much do I owe for you for the food?
Are you sure?
Haven’t seen you for a long time.
We did?
No, we didn’t .
Whatever.
Looks nice out.
It is?
Doesn’t look cold.
Did I pay you for the food?
I did?
No, I didn’t.
Fine.
You want some of this pizza?
You don’t eat beef?
What the hell do ya eat?
Is it Saturday or Sunday?
Wednesday??? Oh shit!
Fucking remote, it’s retarded, I’m trying to get the news!
The Vatican? Doesn’t take much to piss them off.
No, I don’t think so either, they should rot in jail for the rest of their lives.
Whole world’s going to hell.
I’m glad I won’t be around much longer.
You want some pizza?
No? Did you eat?
A kassadilly?
What the hell is that?
Huh.
Looks nice out.
It is?
I can’t wait till spring, get outta of this fucking apartment.
What month is it? December?
March??? Oh shit!
You want some of this?
Oh. . . oh yeah, you don’t eat beef.
My memory’s going.
Where do have to go?
Have a date?
Stop in more often, I never see you.
We did?
No, we didn’t.
Love you too.
Be careful.
And if you’re not careful, name it after me.

 

THE 6:20 AND THE 2:45

I dreamed the office had moved to New York so
I got up at 4am to catch the 6:20 train out of
Rensselaer and on the train I fell asleep and I dreamed
within my dream that the sky had taken over the city
rained down a parade of tickertape ablaze caved in on
itself and chased the masses up the avenues when I wake
I’m viewing the Bronx going by at 80 miles per hour the
train weaving in and out of littered tunnels making its way
to Penn station from Penn I take the A train to Chambers
Street and emerging from under the ground I’m inundated by
flowers and hearts and stars and stripes and I’s and N’s and
Y’s NYPD FDNY I heart N Y I heart N Y I heart N Y and
to my right where there should be two buildings that if I
looked up I’d keep looking up and up and up and up then
quickly look down because either I got dizzy or somewhere
inside a voice would say quit looking up you look like a tourist
those two buildings had disappeared
where those structures should stand is only cold city air
I turn the corner and go into work fiddle around on the
computer for a while now I’ve never heard of the state
having half-days but they tell me I can go at 12:30 I leave
the building turn the corner still not there I take a closer
look there’s a lot of dirt in fact it’s mostly dirt I can
look no more I take a train up to the village eat
vegetarian eggplant lasagna at some restaurant I can’t
remember the name of leave intending to shop
wandering somewhere above Washington Square Park
I look south to check still not there I walk some more
shop a little I’m cold I’m tired I take the A train back
to Penn catch the 2:45 train home and on the train again
I fall asleep and I dreamed within my dream that there was
a dump in the middle of the city and people carefully sifted
through it picking out blackened busted pieces draping
American flags over them saluting them and shipping them
away I wake 15 minutes from Rensselaer when we arrive
I get my car drive home and go to bed preparing to wake
from this dream I do at 7am to get to work by 9:15 there
I tell the people about the dream I had and they say
they’ve had that dream many times and beware for
you will have it again and again and again
and again . . .

 

TO AMY

amy,
it was confusing, wasn’t it?
battered blistering sorrow black icy fear
create the circus delightfully sad
they yell higher higher higher
stop
stop steering into the self-destructive skid
you say but it’s my fucking car
and it’s this piece-o-shit hunk-o-junk
they all slow down to look at
you write you sing you stumble
you stumble you write you sing
they listen they clap
they all become one big wow
but, wow, the hard slugs gave you this red raw power
it’s confusing
so if no one is around to give you a slug
you can always black-n- blue yourself
until you have to give every piece of this day’s mind stitches
that make a turbulent tapestry
and they all gasp at its wonderful ugliness
and then they turn and they say
get pretty
but do that thing you did when you were fucked-up
it’s hard to accept that love can come from the same place as hate
you can deliver your loudest voice from that naked place
but you risk being pulled limb from limb in dangerous confusion

 

SUMMARY OF A MEETING

What I want to know is
how do I lie a little on this voucher,
but make it look I’m not lying?
Maybe if you found out who lies,
and what I mean is who lies a little
and who lies a lot,
we can find out which lies work best.
So, I’m sitting here being honest with you about lying.
Because there’s no lie like an honest lie.
Our current system of lying is not working.
We need to get consistent here about our lies.
So you go check out which folks tell the filthy little lies
and which ones tell the big fat deadly sin lies
and we’ll get back together in a month or two
or a week
or a month and a week
and talk about it.