1. walk into the backdrop
    all tall fall grass bent wheat
    stalks the last peeling green
    skin leaves off black trunks
    off rough
    limbs with brick walls
    behind silhouettes cast
    metal into statues of ephemera

    the bright orange gold crown tree
    reveals itself holey in shadow
    laid patches across the lawn
    thriving in the final green respite
    a terminal lucidity of color 
    a wonder before
    hospice turns winter

    my soles rigid
    my feet clomping
    hypnotic my liquid
    pumping wonder

    wonder pumping me through
    a world where humans divide
    everything into mine and not
    mine i see and feel both at
    once wants and want won
    things lost to found out

    is mine i’m
    in everything

    empty and
    the thick vinegar
    urge toward a pick-
    led cry

    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  2. the air turns
    to a hunk of petrified cheese
    my lungs a box
    grater with bulging
    knife fins over ice
    holes where my breath
    drags through like fish
    hooked and plops
    wet and heavy
    into a chest
    guilty full
    of life

    when i read the horror story
    of the murderer
    Darren Wilson
    in play by play action

    the same dull
    cutting instrument
    used as a funnel then
    as i vomit my guts back up
    through the burning pipe
    of hot air that is my white
    safe alive

    my disgust
    causes nothing
    to change

    i am (not) reduced
    rather proven
    to be a giant
    pile of vile
    bodily fluid

    trying to scoop
    my own shit
    back together
    into a bucket
    of monday
    morning and

    for my paycheck
    and more
    of the same


  3. arguments against white pickets

    a punk circus

    it was not close
    but i still missed it

    run off
    in the dusting

    koala fingerprints
    margarine molecules plastic
    relatives and the persnickety food choices
    turkeys make

    what are you
    one off from

    which acts
    better in person

    the recorded version
    is not the same as live

    is it real
    to reel

    too real
    for you
    to abide

    or not enough
    or both at once

    wants what’s

    it works
    like a seat

    bucket comfortable

    it is a fence


  4. will the true antonym please…

    hurt so bad
    he lost control
    of his spit glands

    sprayed my face
    when he insisted
    forgiveness is not
    the opposite of hate

    agreed I said
    I know I know
    gratitude is

    which do you prefer
    stand up

    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  5. comfortable trappings

    you and me against the world is provocative
    in this day and age

    soul mates
    loyal comrades
    in family in arms
    coated in arms
    coats of arms
    and held

    that’s tight
    right and close

    yet the zero
    sum game
    got some game
    on ya

    and if you win
    and the world loses

    you’ll get pretty sick of each other
    either way it’s lonely alone
    even together at the top
    and at the bottom

    closed and cozy
    is its own

    kind of


    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  6. insect wise and coming together in one giant ecstasy

    because it is not a chipmunk war
    won through repeated run throughs
    of the catch and release sword

    we all know the best
    social justice
    ninja warriors
    don’t start literary journals

    that does not even make sense
    no matter how grammatically correct
    it is {so easy, now, stop fooling yourself}

    celebrity can be the height of your functioning
    if you are a bee aiming for queen of the hive


    the scale of reciprocity is off
    that is simply not how humans

    the ant contributing
    to the army is impressive
    fully expressing all his natural

    people acting the same way
    are such a waste

    rituals that isolate
    are headed
    for death

    i prefer to

    if that’s the best
    we can accept


  7. hearts
    wants upon
    a time


  8. fazed

    No more zombie-ing my way through the morning grooming routine. I learned to make it a game, to pay attention along the way. My shower head drains in myriad skinny streams of water.

    I might isolate one strand of the spray and position myself beneath it so it falls, alone, on the middle of my tongue. I cannot not grin just thinking of it.

    It falls to such a tickling effect. It is barely bearable. Quite wonderful. Especially when you can, then, rock back and forth, into and back out from under it. Almost orgasmic, almost like my tongue is my mouth’s own… most sensive, sensitive body part. 

    Wink wink winking water. 

    Very old and wrinkled grandmother faces are the latest object of sensation for artsy fartsy photographers, including representations of women from all over the world. The more remote the better, actually.

    Context. North american nursing homes, not so much. Not so much kitsch. What you see in the background matters. The less sterile the better. Colors and dirt and thirdish world markets. 

    The camera was not made to be kind to middle aged women’s faces or black dogs or dead bodies. The lens does not hold a kind bone in its skeleton, nothing cute or spooky. No patience for the kooky, the irreverent the unself-consciously enthusiastic but not pretty captured, in stills. 

    We are here, women with dawning realization that we can’t ignore the questions we first raised when they shoved us under the box painted like a viciously garish yellow school bus.

    We are here to challenge your gaze. To suggest you need not constantly be looking at our faces, checking for reassurance reflected back in the cool polished expressions of the good-looking you have been so fortunate to surround yourself with.

    Proof. Poof. We are here to suggest it takes more to validate your existence than appearances. 

    We are here to take pictures of our hands, busy and engaged and moving across all variety of things we encounter, because when we stopped caring about your judgments we found wonder. 

    So much wonder. So much wonder we discovered. So much wonder we discovered how to wonder about what wonders might still be resting hidden in each you. 

    You can stumble alongside us stumbling, too. Once in a while we might want to look over at each other, see eyes in deep faces changing. But mostly, we’ll keep walking, hold hands and swinging in amazement at all the messy mess so gross, and harsh, and glorious all around us. 


  9. interviewed the top
    selling salesman he said
    the number one rule top

    regardless whatever
    you bring to market
    the more control you have
    over it
    the easier it is to sell

    we would be wise
    to remember this well
    when attempting to
    avoid selling ourselves

    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  10. midlife crisis was born
    when people started living longer
    long enough to figure out they’d been

    then they invented retirement
    to get the middle-agers
    back in the coop

    the chickens still don’t
    have any reasons
    to cross the road

    and so they don’t


  11. if not violent
    if not controlling
    if not judgmental
    inherently then 
    what or who
    stole the cookies
    from the world we are
    aliving in

    might we be
    making machines
    making machines
    machines before
    from to within in all


    that’s what we
    aren’t we

    after all

    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  12. reminders upon being found lost

    trickster’s job
    is to harbor invention
    ideas and the curious
    deep in its matted fur
    out of reach to mainstream
    authority underneath layers
    of risky exuberant fun
    to lure us
    into change
    pushing from out
    front pulling
    from behind
    to scramble
    our {false} sense
    of security in exchange for
    sensed and felt
    harsh glorious


  13. once
    the one

    the scene
    owed an

    and his

    took hold
    and holed
    the altar

    wrung hands
    warm bread
    bred in rows
    rose flowered

    beet bloodied

    red read

    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  14. what

    listening to my memory
    of a story the boy told
    to prove he wasn’t
    a man

    watching him wrap
    strands of ripped off
    lies around
    his hand bandages
    to deliver the punch
    line crossed for his rape

    waking up inside

    preemptive at the air
    why did the picketer
    cross the road

    he had to
    prove he
    wasn’t responsible
    for himself and all

    that he would do later


    Tagged #poetry #jillc

  15. it did not matter
    how many times
    he said her name

    to erase
    the times
    he didn’t

    when protest lies
    too much against
    the truth
    it leaves an

    dark spot
    under shadow
    cast reaching
    for a hold
    on untruth

    less dense
    floats away

    from him

    Tagged #poetry #jillc