Stephanie Anderson

With Love and Baths and Rage and Love,

I go grasping
with language &
my plush
body unravels.

January, shitting
blood in a Georgia
beach house,
five months

since last I wrote.
A shutdown
is not poetic.
Did you leave

to jot down
a line, you ask.
No, I went
to take my

blood pressure.
I write on
WeChat,
hoping the bath

is not too
hot because I can’t
Google a
good source on water

temp. & pregnancy.
Fluid facts,
willful walls.
I have applied to 48

jobs. We’ll flip
a coin, you say, to see
whose basement
you’ll live in.

A freight train, a plane.
I should be
applying
to a job right now.

I hover over
an article titled
How to Rekindle
a Friendship.

PPD felt like
the personality
dissociation
of strong Salvia.

It’s not repetition,
I say. We keep
looking for a way
to want to stay.

I imagine
you as a tiny
auger
shell. What gets

unraveled
isn’t form,
it’s a form
of supplication.

With Love and Summer and Rage and Love,

the statuary headlines pivot apart
because of hurricanes and pardons
   in North America     you all looked

up     here only particles blotted
the sun     we wanted hope in the form
of ambition     it was like staring

into a well trying to outline limbs
   what wave is this feeling     we can hear
a clarinet and a hammer

   self-preserving punctuation
   we wanted to wander in rooms
full of musical instruments

   it’s selfish     the air has been
good for three days     a dash
to get to the station     an elevator

to the terraces     taps of fat
raindrops on the train windows
   in the Netherlands the bat houses

are shaped like bats     our body
doesn’t feel like this     do you know
how many slugs are in the world

   discarding verbs     we wanted
to need no ends     but the only truth
of that is anagram     we get good

and butthurt     the way underbrush
gets illuminated in grey     there is space
in this car for bikes     old bodies

   pregnant bodies     we collect places
in Instagram     we pass an hour with
calendars and panic     it’s a kind

of construction project     you say
the hay bales look like public art
   he tells the former president’s daughter

about conception in her country     the track
edges are dotted with pink     we spend
40 hours in the future     storks in a chimney

are good luck     what kind of stability are
we after     tonight we’ll see a movie
I knew the star when

With Love and Irritation and Rage and Love,

We make a pact not to look
at Facebook for the week. I only cheat twice.

We walk into the thick air
for wolf dinosaurs.

I never was a good loser.
I keep saying that we should see our work with humor.

There is no voicemail in China.
We run the filters on high.

This week I try I do this
because I keep collapsing
into a tedium of lists.

We walk into the thick air
for a second story called Heaven.

The holiday letter drama returns.
A tedium of flushing.

I try not to say Ask your students
and believe them.

I gesture heart sparkles at you.

Can I Taobao one of these clever pivot stoppers for my brain.

In Heaven, the fish is so orange
the camera can’t pixelate it.

We can’t tell from the headlines
what people are talking about.
A tedium of forecasting.

They’re so afraid they
keep feeding the oligarchs.

It’s unpresidented.
All the humor changes key.
It’s serious.

I can’t hook the present and we can’t get up.
The humor is monstrous and should be.

With Love and Grief and Rage and Love,

We must disenthrall ourselves. Where
we live the ground is lava or it’s a play.
We undertake to call and call. The canker
sore medicine is bitter and blackens

my mouth. Age made it seem like the sudden
hadn’t crested the peak yet. Poise
is a performance I keep trying to
repeat, but for me the costs are low.

On Facebook the police are posting fake
news: protesters block an ambulance.
The curtain’s up on crowd control. Repeating
lines become we hope that you will hear

us out. Hearing the right redshift between
stepping up and getting out of the way.

Stephanie Anderson is the author of three books of poetry, most recently If You Love Error So Love Zero (Trembling Pillow Press), as well as several chapbooks. Her poems have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Bone Bouquet, Boston Review, Denver Quarterly, DIAGRAM, Guernica, Lana Turner, nonsite.org, and elsewhere. She co-edits the micropress Projective Industries and currently lives in Singapore.
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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis (susanlewis.net) is the editor of Posit (positjournal.com) and the author of ten books and chapbooks, including Zoom, winner of the 2017 Washington Prize, Heisenberg's Salon, This Visit, and State of the Union. Her poetry has appeared in such places as The Awl, Berkeley Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron, Gargoyle, The Journal, New American Writing, The New Orleans Review, Prelude, Raritan, Seneca Review, So to Speak, Verse, Verse Daily, and VOLT.