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2 Poems by Cecily Iddings

Because what do I do
there but cook eat talk.
Because I do not like
ovens and knives but find
the party punishing.
For me unnatural heat
for the guests soufflé
or would they rather rabbit.
I can’t find rabbit
though nearby legions
nibble tremble fuck.
Nothing for the mob
rampaging the bathroom
to damage a dear
soap dish to yank
the shower curtains
that clicked reassuringly close
and open on something like
ball bearings. Why not
bury the hatchet
asks a deviled egg. Why
when the guests advance
like a cell of sleepers
who look like me
or you and mean
nothing personal
why when they seize
the kitchen where
the frequency
of home accidents turns
the ladyfingers grim
why do I arrange
crackers and why
touch each one?
To forestall loneliness
I have had God
installed permanently
in my soul like an iPod
with a never-ending
battery and an all-prayer
playlist or like
a big daddy
or a wiretap
and I am certain
I am better
off. Unlike Emerson
I won’t want
to visit my love
who has died and won’t
open the coffin
and won’t come out
shaken calm
won’t forever change
myself or the rhetoric
of a new empire where
in a depression
filled with farmland
my mother leans
against a pitchfork
and looks as if to say
with so much work here
who needs comfort?
Cecily Iddings’ first book is Everyone Here (Octopus Books, spring 2014). Her poems have appeared (or are soon to appear) in Article, Horse Less Review, jubilat, Saltgrass, Sixth Finch, Skein, and Spinning Jenny, among other places. She lives and teaches in Brooklyn.