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Russell Jaffe || 3 Poems


Hoodie vacuum hole face: I am dead because I am not a man.

Shout outs for the severed action figure limbs in abattoir drains.

This college town’s sorority teeth blitzkrieg announcement of shoes

upon the mascot blonde tipped beerstain hate

with a capital 8. This sports jersey mesh is a rewiring of nails and flesh.


I am listening

and scaling fences to escape with sweatlines of mesh pulp human body cords

I take hand by hand over into the night of you. You are a hole and a hole


Judgmental wiring net screaming the awfulness of the neighborhood to sleep.

I find this impotent totality

tremendously boring

say the tissue wafts

of the thin skull shavings to the hot wind.

In analog glitch I let myself go to the highway.

On the unknown time of night highway I yelled because of the nothing. Void me.

Suburban nosejobs and twine of recollected eyelashes

you can experimentally surgically rearrange the way I feel about you

but the latticing to critical organs is too tight.

I’ll gush to death as usual.

Don’t give up believe in yourself I

don’t know how to stop vomiting.

Thus I am a waterfall thus

I am a rainbow.




No matter where the sun turns

it’s day.

Meanwhile on earth

the cold sun mumbles to long landscape portraits. Fields blur like jug-caught light.

Farm equipment on the long and lonely immortal spine

writes love poems

seeking attention. Consignment auction keyboards listen defused in my trunk.

The handful of trees lean staggering on tractors. It’s a time of day.

It’s my day to drive. I feel like I am wearing a hat of some kind but I’m not.

Here the sun is colder than in most places.

The sun sighs a little further away from this Midwestern place

like a bus passenger next to someone draped in a sheet of cold white sweat

who says what they think

tells their life story and what’s going on and what’s the problem

and falls asleep snoring loudly.

The clouds wander through parking garages checking iPhone reception

or rooftop distances they’d like to will themselves most to appear atop. Same here.

I’m a teleportationalist. I’m an evaporationist.

What I am is

just not here.




I hold up my hand and do the peace sign in front of this burned husk of everything

and say there’s nothing wrong. With second best.

Remonstrate hoodie your local punk scene all fireside.

You’re the cutest

say all the lip rings.

We’re a nation of winners

say the light poisoning electric all nighters

eating Monster Thickburgers and drinking ridiculously gigantic sodas.

We have rock candy 4 AM Olympic Silver blood.

Black fingernails. Chain pants. Under eye black shopping bags.

Sun we worship

lap loudly the
industrial runoff licorice colored water
over stones and lawn furniture. Water at last

O I take it back. Drainpipes and cigarette butt eyelashes grating marrow cages

I finally get you.

Let’s pepper our fuck it with smaller fuck its. Let’s stand up against the amps.

It was thus I raged for the sake. #1 eludes me.

The rage made me want to destroy.

The destroy made me want to sad.


Russell Jaffe is the Co-Editor of Strange Cage (strangecage.org), a chapbook poetry press, and MC/coordinator of its reading series. He is the author of one poetry collection, This Super Doom I Aver (Poets Democracy, ’13), and a few chapbooks. His poems have appeared in The Colorado Review, [PANK], H_NGM_N, Spork, La Petite Zine, American Letters & Commentary, and others. He serves a power greater than us all, and that is poetry, and he collects 8-tracks. Get at him at russelljaffeusa.com