My Virginia Woolf in disguise –
My veil, my apprentice, shaman, owl wise.

I see Jean Rhys’s ghost in-intervals.
Joyce Carol Oates’s hands, and rouge.

Rapture. Oh, rapture.
There was Plath’s lipstick.

The milk, the buttered bread, Ariel.
Gas. Gas. Gas and stamps.

Updike’s father’s tears.
A child’s eyes can see the worm.

Daddy’s painted drum.
Let the dishes rot-into-nothing.

Hemingway’s earth does not waste-anything-in-the-end.
The cornfields of Illinois are pretty

Where David Foster Wallace
Grew up. His childhood

Was made up of bonfire anecdotes
Shark teeth and infinite jest

He was the pale king sitting on an earth-throne
The so-called psychotic bewitched by libraries

By the halls of Amherst the Midwest where of-all-things
Genocide took place. Murder and speeches

His dream songs. They came from space
He gripped his pen. Left behind an alphabet of supernova writing

There were monsters hiding in the closet
Monsters under the bed. The room is smaller

Than he remembers when he returns home
From Amherst water and lobsters pouring out of him

As he evaporates. America offers shelter for some
Meat and potatoes kind of women and men

Worms, holes, the dark, maniacs
Hooks already programming him.

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