“Chemotherapy and the Tasmanian Devil” by Jaclyn Piudik

“Through the Woods” by Sydney McKenna, watercolor, 30″ x 32″

An elephantine drip aglow
fortuitous bubble gum – pop – à la Bazooka Joe
Her appetite undergoes treatment for disarray
in the dark archives of University and College
Joan of Arc or Jones New York
have no place in these toxic gardens
Jab her with poetic justice, a heartfelt grunt
a rasp and a slow-borne growl of plasmatazz

The curative act [sic] becomes art
of the omnivorous kind, the hellishly tired veins

swig their pastel cocktail
a seeming infinity of cranberry masks

the sterile byways, the benign gleam
of cartoon English and wigged-outness

Looney music pacifies the buzz, the nauseated
floral-spin in the afterworld desert

Distant from eloquent drawl, she is so radiant
Shine on crazy diamond: omnia mutantur


Jaclyn Piudik is the author of To Suture What Frays (Kelsay Books 2017) and two chapbooks, Of Gazelles Unheard (Beautiful Outlaw 2013) and The Tao of Loathliness (fooliar press 2005/8).  Her poems have appeared in numerous anthologies and journals, including New American Writing, Columbia Poetry Review, Burning House, Barrow Street and Contemporary Verse 2.   She received a New York Times Fellowship for Creative Writing and the Alice M. Sellers Award from the Academy of American Poets. Piudik has edited three collections of poetry for award winning Canadian publisher Book*hug. She holds an M.A. in Creative Writing from the City College of New York, as well as a Ph.D. in Medieval Studies from the University of Toronto.