Solid Quarter

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Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Day 5: 30 Days of Pussy & Poetry


From Deborah Poe's ,,clitoris,, ,,vulva,, ,,penis,,:


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SYLLABICATION: clit·o·ris

There should be a book like cunt called clit. And it’s all about orgasm, isn’t it. And know that bling is this. Revision: “An NO2 high- to the 9nth degree.” Such as, Vienna variants and inclines. A decline to recline. There is a Gustav Klimt painting.  The kiss of the clitoris. It would be so beautiful save the deformed bodies, not long enough, not long enough. This clitoris longs enough for you. This clitoris is a packsaddle that leans and bends. This clitoris is a suffixed form, a small erectile organ sloped towards you.

Cover by: Sarah Elizabeth Kirby


Deborah Poe's chapbook revolves around the syllabics, definition and etymology of these three words: clitoris, penis, and vulva. The "penis" becomes grouped with the "clitoris" and the "vulva" in this poem. When we arrive there, Poe tells us: "To talk about a neighboring penis that whips its pussy into shape. Because a vulva deserves, mind you. And a landlord should listen who has never seen a head on car crash. A landlord is a penis. The penis stands revised. The penis stands erect. "  The penis in this chapbook is revised and reprised, and yet here we are again with the same technical terms for it in its "erectness,"  in its lording over the land as it were. 

In the poem "Serial Vulva," Poe writes: "At night, there is a blanket, a covering of you. Whether or not you know it, I take a ride with you. What is this ride? Is it like a roller coaster or more, a ferris wheel. It depends on the moment. It depends on the social mores."

Poe breaks down each word into the syllabics reminding us that it is on the tongue, on the way words leave our mouths that we begin to form our understanding. From there, we seek the historical meaning as no word exists in a vacuum; it is our need to define that helps us place a word into context. From there we scroll through all of the allusions and associations that each particular word has for us. Each word in the human language resonates particular for each person. Here Poe takes three words that are simply part of our anatomy, but which also in our culture carry a heavy weight. In some ways, a weight much heavier than what can be located in the simple definition. There in the poem, Poe begins to unravel how we associate and dissociate from a word. We always come to the poem with our expectations, and Poe swerves from where we might imagine we would go in each case. There is a deliberate rupture, an off balance caused by sudden swings into consciousness. It mimics the trickiness of trying to say anything about a loaded word like "vulva" or "penis." Where does one begin or end. 

Poe captures us: "And again, the vulvas all laugh. They are like the wind that laughs at a farmhouse refusing the farmer and his wife." 
     

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