Jasmine Dreame Wagner is the author of Rewilding (Ahsahta Press, 2013) and Listening for Earthquakes (Caketrain Journal and Press, 2012.) Her writing has appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Blackbird, Colorado Review, Indiana Review, NANO Fiction, New American Writing, Seattle Review, Verse, and in two anthologies:The Arcadia Project: North American Postmodern Pastoral (Ahsahta Press, 2012) and Lost and Found: Stories from New York (Mr. Beller's Neighborhood Books, distributed by W.W. Norton, 2009.) A graduate of Columbia University and the University of Montana, Jasmine has received grants and fellowships from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Hall Farm Center for Arts & Education, Summer Literary Seminars - Kenya, and The Wassaic Project. She teaches creative writing at Western Connecticut State University.
THE SCRIPT IS
the sun to the Earth. The script is the star to the sun. The script is the moon to the moon. The script is the interview format. The script is the pilgrim in the dog. The script is opening the door of sleep. The script is the Wilhelm Scream. The script is our summer Lenin. The script is our popsicle stick castle. The script is our year in pop. The script is the bubble burst. The script is the air route out. The script is a holiday poem. The script is a yard at work. The script is hungry light. The script is pistol lash. The script is sandy bank. The script is tweet tweet. The script is riffing. The script is a ship plunging in and out of the waves. The script is an oil rig. The script is "forever in chains." The script can't stop pickpocketing. The script is unreadable but published. The script implies a career. The script suggests lavalieres. The script is a pool of thread. The script is a career. The script is the radius. The script is star construction. The script is the symmetry of a hole. The script is the depth of organs. The script is the shortest path. The script is light from one hole to the next. The script works out. The script is labor. The script lifts. The script has sticky fingers. The script splits as a kaleidoscope splits. The script is confetti. The script is folded along a line. The script is book-bound. The script is hinges. The script is a lone icosahedral die. The script contains an element of chance. The script is her autistic twin. The script is icicle drip. The script is newsflash hematoma whiplash. The script is hello dollar menu. The script is on fire. The script is on at 11. The script has it your way. The script is chorus. The script is marquee red nines. The script is taillights. The script is warehouse storage. The script mimes. The script isn't that for me to decide. The script is cost. The script is pure pleasure leisure pleather. Pure pleather. Purity. The script is gold-embossed. The script is gummy white-out. The script is each and every ardor. The script is follicle-plucked. The script is Lasik sight-surgery. The script's flesh is irrelevant. The script is maximum script. The script is a model. The script has legs up to here. The script is his first love. The script is Christian rock. The script is digitally verified. The script has been rounded out. The script is available now. The script is the meaning song. The script is the remaining camera. The script is the pocket notes. The script noodles. The script is song's song. The script is rocket blare. The script is click the blinking meteor. The script is we click. The script is personal. The script opens to knot. Do you want to abort the script? The script contains scripting statements. The script is too good to wait. The script is in game mode. The script is handwriting. The script is and was and will be the first lyric. The script is aim to repeat the script. The script is science. The script is faith. The script is dinosaur daisies. The script is like. The script subscribes. The script is the entire script. The script is strings. The script is cast. The script is in the house. The script is up all night. The script is internal hemorrhaging. The script is rift. The script is raft. The script is rodeo. The script is rack. The script cracks. The script is. The script is.
The script is.
The script is.
Our starlet will not be a moon. Will not. Will not. Will not.
Will not be the tiny dancer
that dies when you close the music box.
Will not orbit, rotate, spin, turn, twirl, twist, grind, gyrate, will remain
still like a billion watt light bulb. Will not
be the moon. Will not be the spotty moon, the flaky moon, the attention deficit
moon. Ritalin moon. Dexedrine moon.
A little yellow pill. Our starlet will not
be the Claritin moon. The congested
moon that sags in the corner of the sky, face hidden behind a cloud
of tissue. The hay fever
moon that crosses the night room and jets
without saying goodbye. The antisocial
moon. The shy moon. The wallflower moon. The Jakob Dylan and The Wallflowers moon. The Sean Lennon moon. The moon that inherits its light from its father.
Listen to the heir moon roar
at the notion that his light
is not his own.
The Julian Lennon moon. The abandoned
moon chases the trail of his father's royalty
checks from "Here Comes the Sun"
as the Ono moon scores an aria for the light
that slips from the palm of her hand
as it closes.
Our starlet will not be a moon. Will not. Will not. Will not
behind the well-formed limbs
of trees/classmates in the time-lapse/graduation
photograph. Will not. Wear lacy clouds
to Homecoming. Will not be a slutty moon,
the slutty moon lays down
with any lonesome poet
who will have her.
The braless in the backseat
moon. The topless in the backbeat
moon. The nipple
moon. The Janet Jackson at the Superbowl moon. Will not
strip and dress
to strip and dress. Will not be
the cocktease moon. The pasty moon.
Numb moon. Dumb moon. Blonde moon. Boob moon.
The Courtney Love moon, Madonna moon. The moon is older than she looks.
Dogs howl at her because she doesn't smell human. Not our starlet.
Our starlet's pale white face will
get dirty. She will hurt, she will ache unmediated, she will do her own stunts, she will
not be the oxygen mask moon, the Oxycontin moon, Valium moon,
the dissolving mood moon. Will not
be the Jermaine Jackson moon petitioning to change his name to
moon. Will not
be the lone headlamp dangling in a collapsed mine
moon, the canary moon, the moon snuffed out
like a candle in the wind. The Princess Di moon.
The Elton John moon.
The moon's white piano
plays a popular ballad
that fades to light rock radio
then resurfaces in an Olympic-style comeback,
as the chubby moon
the yo-yo dieting moon
finds someone who loves her
who doesn't need to slice a portion of her away
as, at the car dealership, the luxury model
moon floats on the sky's black carpet, as, outside
on the interstate, a passenger seat
airbag moon blooms
in the crack
as the Occupy
moon protests at apogee
as the new college student
moon accepts a martini
moon from a white stranger
in a dark suit
and wakes in a moon of ice.
The urban myth moon.
The album BAD MOON RISING.
The Nico singing
"I'll be your mirror"
moon before the cover band
moon sings someone else's songs
ardently, inexactly, deep into the night
when the jukebox moon, the ASCAP performance royalty
moon takes over 'til dawn
breaks/the night's bleak venue refuses to pay.
The sun-earns-mechanicals-every-time-the-moon-crosses-the-sky moon.
The synch-licensed moon. The YouTube moon. Moon ©.
The analytics-enabled moon.
The bit torrent moon.
The earbud moon.
The moon's Wikipedia entry:
The moon, like information about the moon,
wants to be free.
But if the moon, like moonlight, is free, how will anyone earn
gravity? How will anyone learn
how to be?
Tides don't turn automatically.
Somebody's moon has got to do it.
Somebody's moon has got to keep us
up all night
with the deep, inexplicable
of a teenaged deep sea diver. The Jacques Cousteau
moon. John Steinbeck's The Pearl
moon. The Discovery Channel's Shark Week
in the trenches. Fiber optic light probe moon
in our universe's interstitial drainage ditches.
Somebody's moon has got to grace us
with traces of our darkened spaces.
(The formal, end-rhymed moon.)
Famous full moons:
Heart of Darkness
The padlock moon
on the white
in the middle
of a black lot.
Who will bid on the unclaimed lot of the moon?
Not our starlet.
THE UNIVERSE IS NOT
A SILENT MOVIE
The universe is performing its sonic composition and you are late and you have been ushered to your seat in the theater.
The universe is performing its sonic composition and Usher shines his flashlight into your bloodshot eyes.
The universe is performing and Cage would be proud but he's dead though the universe knew him.
Black holes bang their mallets on the timpani.
Black holes bang their sticks on the soprano snare.
Black hole stage hands cast shadows but you haven't seen one in years.
It's true, the black hole used to be a starlet.
Don't stand behind the black hole, everyone will see you - you idiot!
Black holes in black tuxedos with gold cummerbund galaxies.
Black holes in black sequins in gold petal balconies.
Einstein said that black holes were mathematical anomalies
that couldn't exist because nature would protect us
from a rip in her fabric
but nature is logarithmic and so is the cummerbund
and fabric can't protect us from spills or tears or the static cling of other fabrics.
The universe is composed of fabrics that reign over other fabrics.
The universe is composed of silk, wool, cotton, nylon, rayon, and polyester.
The universe is composed of producers, directors, actresses, and actors.
The universe is composed of sopranos, altos, basses, and tenors.
The universe is composed of SEO, alter-egos, baseness, and tremors.
The universe is composed of stars and star gazers.
The universe is composed of curves that arc over other curves.
Our starlet will not collapse under the pressure
LIVESTRONG not collapse
into Britney, Lindsay, no
she'll go out signing
like a sequin in the cat litter.
A black hole is a sequin in the cat litter.
The black hole is a sequin in your Diet Coke. The other black hole is your glass.
The black hole curves down the throat of the black hole like a cold Coke on an August morning.
The black hole curves down the throat of the black hole like Diet Mountain Dew at the mall after a 5K run.
The universe curves down the throat of the black hole like Orange Crush after church on Sunday.
The universe curves down the throat! The universe curves down the throat! The universe curves down the throat!
The black hole curves down the throat! The black hole curves down the throat!
Don't you hate exclamation marks? Even when
it feels as though everything is speeding up, only our starlet is falling
into the black hole like night falls into morning.
(It isn't dark inside a black hole. A black hole is only black if you look at it
from the outside. And who wants to go outside in all this weather?)
Don't call the black hole solstice in Siberia.
Don't call the black hole an Oreo Cookie. A Ring-Ding. That's offensive.
The sound of a black hole is the white noise of broken television.
The sound of a black hole is a California earthquake.
The black hole is coming— wear neon!
What is an old growth forest?
What is a bouquet of flowers?
Is it an invasion of privacy?
The telephoto lens.
The way we clip the stems.
Is it true crime?
We trail the scent
of orchids as though hunting ivory.
Our daisies denuded
of ornamentation, each petal pulled
towards one sun, a poise
in essence, utilitarian— until—? Is it fair
what blossoms? Flowers gone
brown, then white against the window
like sugar spilled
on a forest floor.