In the Valley of Whatever, I

Katherine Gibbel

conducted an orchestra                                of my own desire
and ignominy                                                                  I deposed
my shame                                                           w/ my sentiment
in my cotton                                                       brutalist blouses
I spun nonsense                                              little saraspondas
upon the cherry                                                    bedframe or in
televised forests                                                       ringing metal
ornamentation                                            pileated w/ memory
I asked my dad                                                                        kindly
to sew on                                                       three plastic daisies
my polyester skirt                                                of gross sinews
those ruffles                                                                   thrilled me
did I hate                                                                 or did I misuse
their pleasure                                                 in my panted years

I love expectation                                           beauty subsumed
w/ meaning                                                      I mistook for want
lorn and muscled                                          on my cherry table
w/ nine kinds                                                                       of bread
I could be so lovely                                    I could be so regular
and fake w/                                                         watery hosannas
my onliest wants                                                     fear me while
I hold my glads                                     the moment coroneted
in editioned fact                                                         another day
another issue                                                             sentences of
inverse proportion                                          watching the owl
w/ a broken spine                           flap herself by the bushes
made me guess                                                          at my death
my duty to you                                                                   and you