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Pushcart Prize Nominee

Rachel Stempel

Considerations, Predictions, & Manifestations for Chewing-Gum Jezebels

1. Your mother, a poor mouth, is waiting to hear back from you.

2.  Before an apology, cradle expired milk in the groove of your tongue to leach its             

      gonebadness, put it to better use.

3.    An LCD lobotomy is only temporary but a girl can dream.

4.    Body language refuses passion when you’re not a visual person.

5.    Get back to your mother, ask What is the temperature of a handjob?

6.    Invert the spine of a baby bear, ask Is it good? (This is as God as it gets.)

7.    Discover: Mona Lisa is a lesbian.

8.    I will master the on-command nosebleed.

9.    Insects are no longer profitable.

10.  Get back to your mother, ask Is no luxury warranted?

11.  Womanhood is permanent or unbearable, not both.

12.   Notice the moon is often too bright for my liking.

13.   You will talk the perfect amount.

14.   I’ve not an ounce of generosity in my hole-body!

15.  The only real meat remaining is tuna sashimi—striated, succulent, severe. There’s a pussy joke in

       here somewhere. (Have you heard more pussy jokes as a woman or as a lesbian?)

16.  Get back to your mother, say I offered my womb to the highest bidder.

17.  Notice the moon is often too bright for my liking.

18.  Get back to your mother, say Milankovitch cycles have made me awful lonely.

19.  Blossoms are now contagious—Rejoice! (Better late than never, says the birth control         


20.  Be mildly academic, leave enough room for hysterics.

21.  I am waiting for the last Beatle to die so I can win my mother back.

Rachel Stempel is a queer Ukrainian-Jewish poet and PhD student in English at SUNY-Binghamton. They are the author of the chapbooks Interiors (Foundlings Press), BEFORE THE DESIRE TO EAT (Finishing Line Press) and Dear Abbey (Bottlecap Press). They live, laugh, love in New York with their rabbit, Diego.

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