Sunday, October 22, 2006

Sarah Bartlett

Portrait w/ Birds

The mirror in my bathroom
is shaped like the bathroom window,
and in the morning I see
the backward shadows of birds
flying across my face.
Ordinarily this would be
too poemy for my poem,
but I realized anything can be
turned into art. Next it will be
potholders and their congealed
patterns of food. There is one
bird-shaped splotch
that would go nicely here.

Poem Tries to Be Good and Fails

There are too many ways to touch
another person or yourself, and this poem
cannot begin to accommodate them.
It would make more sense to skip
the poem all together, take a pen
and write: Here, Here, Here, Here
all over yourself. Leave plenty
of space for others to write notes like
Don't pinch left buttock. Hates it.
Or Monday's a good day to try this:
Maybe lover X is better at Y,
and you'll have to be amended.
It's complicated. So, this poem is
locking itself down, swearing off
missionary position and promising to
deliver a good time. 1-800-POEM ALONE.
All lines are free. Guaranteed.
Poets are standing by.

Sarah Bartlett has received a MFA from Emerson College and lives in Oregon. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Goodfoot, LIT, Free Verse, Redivider, Tin House, and Rhino.