Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Tuesday poem #412 : Brandon Brown : MY FUNERAL



I guess that’s my last party
so I’ll do what I always do
at parties: bum too many smokes,
drink too much, stay too
late, talk too much, say
too much, cower in the
bathroom, hover on the
porch, hug everyone,
look terrific, disappear,
forget most of what I said,
smoked, drank, did,
sleep in the next morning,
write a text to the hosts
to say thank you for
that magnificent party
see you soon I hope



Brandon Brown's most recent books are Work (Atelos) and The Four Seasons (Wonder). He is a co-editor at Krupskaya and edits the zine Panda's Friend. He lives in El Cerrito, California.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Tuesday poem #411 : Kat Cameron : Mosaic of an Imperial Girl

Empress Theodora, Church of San Vitale
Mosaic tile, c. AD 547


Haloed in gold tesserae, I dominate
           the chapel in Ravenna.
Large sloe eyes, aquiline nose,
jeweled headdress, strands of pearl.
          cascading down my royal robe.

Theodora was beautiful of face and otherwise graceful,
but too short and sallow.

Which image will last? I danced for the Blues,
           dazzled Byzantium,
married Justinian. How else to gain power?

Justinian should have married a woman who
had learned the ways of modesty, still a virgin
with perky breasts.

Yes, I was a stripper. My father died

           when I was five.
My sisters and I paraded through the Hippodrome,

our hair wreathed with myrtle, our hands

Never has there been a person so enslaved
to lust in all its forms

Yes, I had lovers. I simulated sex on stage,
a swan pecking grain between my thighs.
           People like to laugh.

It was during this time that the morals
of almost all women too were corrupted

In Procopius’ Secret History, I copulated
           with hundreds. Who
has the energy? Stripper with a

heart of gold, I preferred gold jewelry:
           the original imperial girl.




The italicized lines are from Prokopios: The Secret History with Related Texts. Edited and translated by Anthony Kaldeliss. Hackett Publishing, 2010.




Kat Cameron is the author of two collections of poetry: Ghosts Still Linger (University of Alberta Press, 2020) and Strange Labyrinth (2015). Her short-story collection The Eater of Dreams (Thistledown Books, 2019) was shortlisted for the Danuta Gleed Literary Award. She has published poetry and stories in numerous journals and anthologies, including Beyond Forgetting: Celebrating 100 Years of Al Purdy, CV2, Descant, Grain, New Forum, Room, and 40 Below: Volume 2. Her short story “Dancing the Requiem” won Prairie Fire’s 2018 fiction contest. She lives in Edmonton on Treaty 6 territory and teaches writing at Concordia University of Edmonton.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan


Tuesday, February 09, 2021

Tuesday poem #410 : Edric Mesmer : love , a context—


requires no coordinates— no crust
of graphic—

desires no tonality— no gist

remembers no mnemonics— no test
of rubric—

harkens no littoral—  no coast-
al bivouac—

yet dreams often— of iconoclasts
          in transit—

threads along , unwoven— past
          a cachette—

disorders specimens— gust
          a yellowjacket—

regrets indifference— that ballet

and then forgets— trysts
and fatalism—

cargo of lockets— encaust-
ic residuum—

untrammeled referent— east/west
set out from—

until at last , a guest
come home—




Edric Mesmer works as a cataloger for the Poetry Collection at the University at Buffalo, where he edits the Among the Neighbors pamphlet series on little magazines. Now & Then, is out now from BlazeVOX (Buffalo, 2020).

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan

Tuesday, February 02, 2021

Tuesday poem #409 : James Lindsay : from LABOUR DAY


July 14, Bluewater
It’s a heinous wrong to watch wildflowers
And the surf dozing what’s left of the beach

In the yard of a cottage I did not build
By hand with sons I had to fight to have

A relationship with on taken land
I say nothing on while complaining

About overkill and depleted beach
Emptied of sand and occupied by rocks

And each rock is an unimaginable failure
I don’t want to say like ghosts but sure

Like ghosts the kind wished back to life
Then disappointedly wished back dead

Because the beach is easier to be on
When we believe rocks cannot claim

And the wildflowers are canary yellow
Turnip violet and bone china white

Because they hate us that much




James Lindsay is the author of Our Inland Sea and the chapbook Ekphrasis! Ekphrasis! He is the co-founder of Pleasence Records and works in book publishing. He lives in Toronto.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan