April 18-24, 2005: Brian Beatty and Jerome Davis

week of April 18-24, 2005

Brian Beatty and Jerome Davis

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Brian Beatty

Bio (auto)

Brian Beatty’s poems have appeared in many print and online publications, including 5_trope, Conduit, elimae, Exquisite Corpse, Fish Drum, Forklift Ohio, Gulf Coast, Milk Magazine, Mississippi Mud, Mudfish, The Quarterly, Quiet Feather, Spout and Taverner’s Koans

In addition to writing, he irregularly performs stand-up comedy around Minneapolis, where he lives He has stand-up material in the humor collection Squeaky Clean Comedy (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2005).

The following work is Copyright © 2005, and owned by Brian Beatty and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Not a Wink

The evening begins with a cork
in the maid’s eye

and the first guests sneaking off
to ruin the wallpaper
I bring out an old phonograph
a few records
“Two-step, anyone?”

Our ice-sculpted Zurich melts
The room’s orbit slows
My wife calls for an ambulance
before I can re-invent
[Originally appeared online at 5_trope ]

How To

Back when telepathic buffoons
were still the rage, you
couldn’t walk
down the street without

over a dozen
shooting looks of dismay
and disappointment up
at foreign satellites
Their pockets empty, 
they subsequently went into
theft, writing how-to bestsellers

revealing the secrets
of just about everybody–

page after page after page after page
of dull, fretful jabber
[Originally appeared online at 5_trope ]

This Must Be the Place

“There are so many beautiful people
.in the world,”
.said the fleeing astronaut

to his good-luck dashboard cowboy

“I wish I could be one of them “

The figurine lowered the kerchief
hiding his tiny face

and whispered to his steed,
“Don’t let on the big guy’s here He’ll go away “

But it was too late The horse was dead
[Originally appeared online at 5_trope ]

A Saturday Morning Epithalamion for Ted Berrigan

Underdog unbunches two actresses’ undies, 
then suggests, “How about let’s discuss this fuss in bed?”
Though wooed — it’s true! — and unwed, neither fucks cartoons
So he buries his bone up the bride’s dress instead
Then apologizes afterwards to her groom

Cue his out-of-sync ’60s soundtrack
Now quit it — he can’t think
His apartment’s fake leather furnishings stink
He finishes a grilled-cheese and Pepsi found in the fridge
Prays his services won’t be further required today He feels sick
He remembers when Hollywood’s leading harlots cooed, “Ooh, Underdog!”

But these days he’s lucky to land a date
even as the beloved mild-mannered Shoeshine Boy
He wonders, does Miss Polly Purebred secretly masturbate?
Otherwise how is it she’s able to fend off his superpowerful paws?

[Originally appeared online at Exquisite Corpse ]

Soap Bubble

I was just another fat kid in a small box

The rich cheating bastards with wheels
couldn’t stop
laughing at my old man’s
cigarette wheeze
Until he accidentally coughed up God

That shut their yaps Their asshole dads took notice, too
Then it all went back to normal, I swear&Mac247;
except now I had my bearings:

1 ) Nothing really changes
2 ) Things go downhill because of Cub Scouts
[Originally appeared online at Milk Magazine ]

Karen Choy


Karen Choy lives in Chicago, Illinois and gets very excited about temperatures above 70 degrees.

The following work is Copyright © 2005, and owned by Karen Choy and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Highway Runner

Remember when I let you bump tin
with that Volvo in the Target parking lot?
Everyone stared and covered their ears
Blocked out your screeches of ecstasy

I was a new driver then
Didn’t know that you preferred discretion
No touching
A quick exit
No crowds
No cops
No insurance adjusters

I got you from a chemist, 
a Chinese man named Roseanne

He said you were an excellent highway runner
It was good, it made you sound like a
Deep Purple song

He was sorry to see you go
But was even more concerned that
I’d feel sad driving you
because of the big dent in your side

Though it was his hit and run accident
His trauma
He offered to pay my therapy bills
Even threw in some rental car certificates
For special weekends when I wanted
the type of car that would take its top off

I’m sorry about one-eyed Willy the stray
He snuck into you, dined on leftover French fries
and Coke backwash
You smelled like cat pee for months after that
no matter how much Febreze no 5
I spritzed on you

You’ve endured broken windows
Flat tires
Stolen batteries
Yet you wear your haggard gray beauty like a tank
Scarred but defiant

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