January 11-17, 1999: Christine L. Reed and Vladik Cervantes

Week of January 11-January 17, 1999

Christine L. Reed and Vladik Cervantes

Christine L Reed


Christine L Reed, from Tranquility New Jersey, is the mother of children, poems and literary magazines She is the editor of Maelstrom, a hard copy magazine of poetry, short fiction, art and humor and the assistant poetry editor for Moondance, a web zine for women Her work has appeared internationally in many magazines, anthologies and web forums and she has work forthcoming in Recursive Angel, Conspire, Perihelion, Zuzu’s Petals Quarterly,  The Burning Cloud Review and others .

The following work is Copyright © 1998, and owned by Chistine L Reed and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsover without written permission from the author.


I gave it to you
yesterday and
now, you ask again!?
I have bucked and sweated
and tossed my hair until
I thought
my head would disengage Oh, ah, ooh Lick, suck, swoon Sigh While you’re down there,
I sneak cat naps,
write poems on my thigh Damn Tylenol!
Cursed Advil!
Headaches debilitate
no more I will relent,
I always do For no one
as good as you.

Divorce Resume

I didn’t do anything interesting
for seven whole years.

The Kingdom of You

” .I lost two cities, lovely ones And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent I miss them, but it wasn’t a disaster ” Elizabeth Bishop

We carved sand ditches with our toes
and laughed about the neighbors,
they fought about the silly things in life
The ocean belonged to you,
you let me visit it, showed me its wonders Let others trespass in your generosity
We lived on these memories, promised
we would return and recapture your claim,
tell the crabs we were home again
In your drug smattered dream-wakes I whispered
the sea into your ear like a prayer,
watched your once burned skin sink deeper
Each night of tubes and sob-wrenched pleas,
trying to squeeze my life into your hand,
I heard the waves crash in the hiss of the pumps
I told you to go on ahead, to explore the new land, 
find the jellyfish of it, and when I got there
I would bask in your kingdom, once more.

I want to be a woman with fingernails

I want to be a woman
with fingernails To tap
and point and flash Status,
gold is cheap now, nails
tell all, how many plates
you’ve scraped and floors
you’ve scrubbed Any man
worth having loves
the tingle of claws run
down, through his spine
and shot straight, they can hit
the mark from the opposite
side of his body
Blood red, sparkled jewels
on the tip of each
spoiled finger, don’t touch
anything and like magic
lure in riches like lawyers My chopped, split tools
which pick out splinters and
peel off stickers reveal too
much They can open
beer cans but corkscrews
feel like foreign words
and the maid won’t come
until they’re two inches long.

Reading Nutrition Labels

Baked into every
delicious bite
of life are chemicals
accumulating and
preservatives supplementing,
replacing the elements
of intellect omitted
due to cost effectiveness
Responsibility for quality
has long since been passed
to the infrastructure of upper
corporate management,
details of said transfer
carefully covered over
and conveniently disremembered
Organic versions are
in sight and available but,
due to peer pressure and
outrageous prices, demand
is down
and the president
does not endorse
his own product
Hostile takeover seems
for the realization of human
potential, untouched
by human hands.

(Forthcoming in Niederngasse)

Vladik Cervantes


Vladik Cervantes has been published in several literary rags out of L.A where he was born and raised During the late 80’s he published an underground fanzine covering the gothic/subculture scene of the time He is also an advocate for Harm Reduction,  you can read an article he wrote for the Harm Reduction Coalition Newsletter at www.harmreduction.org He is now working as a webmaster and writing his first novel in his spare time.

The following work is Copyright © 1998, and owned by Vladik Cervantes and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsover without written permission from the author.


I clip coupons like a fat maiden
Shop in the twenty-first century

for apricots,



and bread
The supermarket doors slide open

and let me in
They are sticky lips
Dilated vagina walls,

electronic to the eye
Each aisle resonates with

the rhythm

of corporate success
The cereal boxes,

jumping out from their shelves,

spill their contents

in my path

and I walk right over them
Each step

filled with the sound of

Our shopping carts have

faulty wheels

that are fevered with malfunction,

and it only takes a few feet

before I’ve abandoned the cart

and go off

looking to steal somebody else’s
Sometimes I feel strange as

I pass the meat section
But I swallow and

take it like a man
In the produce department

I find old friends and

distant relatives,

leafing through the lettuce and

carefully picking out

ripe bananas
I get lost by the canned goods

and I panic,

knocking over displays

as I frantically try to

find my way over to the Deli
I turn left at aisle 10,

Pet Food
Go through aisle 9

and no,

it’s not the way
I’m at aisle 12 now

and still

lost, lost, lost
Finally there it is,

in all its glory
Its big sign hanging

high up on the wall,

clamoring to me

in big red plastic letters
I grab a big soft yellow


and smile because I know

I didn’t forget the

strawberries and milk.

Subscribe to our weekly Newsletter: