The Brooklyn Rail

NOV 2019

All Issues
NOV 2019 Issue


Born in Florida

I come from the dirt
shitted mud in the south
I am the wet-nap
on the door handle
of the gas station bathroom

Piss down out an open tunnel


I dreamt I was there
finally going to


Expose your
lying debaucheries

I ran so fast
I almost
  beat the rain

in trance
you almost
  beat me again


clutching my truth I
pissed the bed to awake-
oh, the pleasure
to hunt you
open eyed

Call time 4pm to fix my stolen right bicycle break

    I am not your dream
    girled into woman-
    womaned into what/
       time- timed tilt the scale,  I only
          feel gendered
       when sex is sexed between thighs wide
          open a solitude

  from a distance she held everything

    it slipped salted through fingers and
     cracked summer heated lips
    circular contoured contorted body

   return to the fetal position

       over turned
          emptying inside city
    outlined in apartment
       lay awake awaiting

   she is safe lit- road flares in her back pocket


        what side of the bed do you sleep on?

    ‘I called you 15 times’
       which can only mean
       I didn’t answer   15/
        times this moment became
          this afternoon became
             the night and night    the morning
    on the 16th ring-
       it was 9pm but I told you it was 7 in the morning

for today, from last night


laura left it open- a star shooting star
 down or letting it go
  to watch it watch in time  change color

  personal private woman  relieved in revelation

            time can move closer to her and on

  the scent of
      the scent of secreting fire
       in her womb

   excite the joy of fresh spirit born

       lover lady love all around you
           delight in the light of your discourse

          we should all do what we love to do.

it’s still July again for the 37th time

arranged in a whores anger, flexed
open legged bent
knees to bed, words to paper
my courtesan who never stayed
never arrived-
in weak stomach stamped with food
i’m so bored of it all

   salt the rice with tears
   somehow, it’ll all taste better

chained at birth
pull my hair around my throat-
my own self chokes-
hold what freedom I have left,
  my worldly accomplishment-
   Number One Whore

when you lie, you never kiss my lips

  lips dry I speak
  lips dry I scream
  lips dry I pull my panties up to piss

No question-
knowing myself- a child childed
poor   white
trashed   in society


     on billboards
     I remember word shapes before I could read them
     on television
     hating the Pillsbury dough boy because he was to outlive me

     about who someone was
     and how they dress in the mirror

I can’t remember eating the chicken
just its fried skin

         there was a caterpillar tree in Texas
         there was a long drive to Florida
         there was filling water into empty flower pots
            and standing in them to escape the humidity

         there was an eye in the hurricane
         there was the sun that came out
         there was the calm in the world
         the day when the days  only  babbled chaos
         it became   havoc

                        And stayed

 a life with nothing
    but this
    doing this
    from the 80s
    until now


introverse tomorrow
katherine asked it 5 times
 who it was
and   it never answered-
i stared at it  for a week-
 its black dust dusted
 back staring at me
a field pulled magnetic
love loving the magnetic pull
out/i wish/i could/i live forever
so "tired of myself"
she says to the camera-

i thought this morning
i had it all

then in the water filled tub
i felt like nothing

the dust dances like caterpillars
soundscapes sounding them
in unison   to motion
  i stop motion film
  i stop motion film
  i stop motion film
  them stop motion
can i sleep
when i am tired


jen fisher

jen fisher was born in florida in 1981. she currently runs the book stand, VorteXity books, in the east village and her poetry, essays, and reviews appear in Dead Horse Bay (2013-present), Xilitla (2019), and Vietnam (2020). she currently lives in queens. (K.P toJ.F.)- “somebody took you. but they told me they gonna give you back soon…” \


The Brooklyn Rail

NOV 2019

All Issues