Two Poems | Benjamin Aleshire

    Original photograph by Jordi Goya.

    Read our October/November 2018 issue in full here.

    Fake Noose

    My smartphone is a nesting doll.
    Suspiciously heavy & rattling faintly
    like a Tsar’s saber, sheathed—
    Something doesn’t add up.
    I open her like a jam-jar, find
    Henry Kissinger head-scarved
    & peasant-skirted, clutching
    his Nobel peace prize—but I pop him
    like a Bud-light. And then Putin glistens
    bare-breasted—I twist his hips apart
    & that’s when it happened.
    It was, like, a farm spilling out—
    It was a Like-Farm. So many emperors
    in that circus giving me a thumbs-up.
    That sound of one hand, clapping.
    I had so much consent manufactured,
    my applause was deafening. Now
    I can do anything, even speak French.
    Listen—alternatif fact—pas de deux—
    nom de guerre—coup d’état—la la, la


    We are the doorway yawning
    through which this world’s
    last tigress will exit.
    But we will also feed you
    & we will set your nation free,
    should you ever want it to be free.
    Don’t deny us—you disembowelled
    whole mountain ranges
    to forge us—just think of that.
    (Or think of starlight:
    the universe riddled
    by our leaving
    & what shines through it)


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