This poem first appeared in the Antioch Review in the Winter 2009 issue and was reprinted in the Anniversary Issue, Fall 2011.
CALL ME YOU-BOAT
by Alice Fulton
My head hit an iron timber and found subconsciousness.
Now my story is stories purposely buried, much churn.
How once beneath a time, we secreted a languish,
texted mess between wireless Palms:
I’m nobody who R U?
R U nobody 2?
How : -( 2B somebody!
A jargonish-russky-germish-tongue duh
third rail cold ward slag:
Wot R U dreaming, cruiser, Aurora?
Ich denke, mir laust der Affe!
Blackburied in dissed oshuns full duh
new clear waste, claustrocloistering.
Metaphors B with U!
Call me Bubblehead. My instruments besealed
under a fake I.D.: Creative Fun Director duh
tabloid subvestite seawhirled TV show
loaded with wet sari scene. Alzo free Smileys,
fine wallpapers, computsky feel-good
E-cards, thousands duh ringtones,
act new, limited surprise!
Germish subs were U-Boats, surenuff, nyet
so were Jews who ripped stars from garments,
lived as fugitives. My peephole, my inspiration!
Flare and they’ll wegputten U.
When there’s martial law in the konzerhalle,
seek demilitarized zones, pass or take cover,
go unter and sub, be closeted, be vacant, be numbed.
Beplummet, beplunge! Because
the world’s a pressure hull. RUOK?
Once I surfaced on a playground
mong toys the hootspa colors duh
dustrial rubber gloves and over-
heard the buzz: Starpom eats her young.
They’d probably need to tweak this behavior.
She made us say bitte and danke so awful
it entered the languish. Oh, bitter please! we say.
Alice Fulton‘s new book of poetry, Barely Composed, has just been released by W.W. Norton. Her honors include the Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry from the Library of Congress, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and a MacArthur Foundation fellowship.
© 2015 The Antioch Review