Eleven and a Half Annual Open Mic

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Page 26: You Can Sleep When Ur Dead by Erica Brunner

You can sleep when you’re dead,

that’s what Prisilla told me.
I had no idea

where I was,
but I was at the Command Center
in Oakland
in a warehouse.
Sliding metal doors
blended into stained concrete.

Prisilla talked about
Gary Glitter, Slade,
the disco ball she owned,
how she couldn’t stop moving,
how every wardrobe
should be composed of
leather, lace, fringe, fur,
bones.

I was curled
on a mauve couch,
head rested on a cum stain.
The couch,
on a riser
next to a hot tub

out of commission
because of fungus.
The riser doubled
as a stage.

My bed, a stage.

Prisilla wanted me to stay awake
so she had someone to dance with.

My eyes, concrete.

Prisilla wanted me to stay awake
so she wouldn’t go back to Angel’s room.
His room, covered in mirrors.
Where sex became about you and the mirror.

From high ceilings dangled
green and blue planets,
televisions mounted to walls
played Star Trek episodes
none
synced to the others.

Angel covered me with a blanket
the scar on his upper lip
so deep,
he whispered,
how can I resist,
those eyes.

The water in the morning was cold.
There was a television covered
in plastic
in the shower.
I washed myself
and watched Star Trek.

Page 58: Shmushmortion by Daniela Bizzell

Shmushmortion by Daniela Bizzell

We called it a shmushmortion. Driving through brown, slush-lined roads, he joked about moving to Mexico. He joked that it wasn’t his. He joked that it would come out dark-skinned, lacking that pale-pink pigment so commonly found in the Swede. I joked that I would leave it on his doorstep and that I would fly to Mexico. I joked that if he made another joke I would punch him in the face. I joked that it would have beautiful eyes, unique, because both of our eyes were beautiful and unique. Except I wasn’t really joking. We both knew, when it came down to things, that he was broke, I was still in college, and if there ever came a time, I would have a shmuhshmortion.

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Page 72: I Will Never Hit Anyone Ever by Sarah Green

I Will Never Hit Anyone Ever by Sarah Green

Amanda doesn’t know she’s seven poets

All of them suffocated by their own mothers’ handbags hiding gateway drugs

Illiterate screaming from a room down the hall and a man whose silhouette isn’t

symmetrical with the floor

paces aimless authority and shuts her up with this thumbs in the grape skin light of 5am

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