Target Audience


What I loved was not you
but a lack

(my lack). What I loved
was not you but my own

and advertising.

O how you moved in me
my motivation to strive.

Isn’t that the major
operating principle?:

Mechanism here is what
you aren’t.

Here is someone
you should want

to be, so that movement
may ensue deep down,

to the store, to the gym,
to the outfitters for your outfit

for success. Yes,
you were very pretty

silent. Able
to maintain your allure

through cowardice—
your talent

for saying so much less
than everyone else.

And that music in your ear:
how omnipotent

it made you feel
driving across the Bay Bridge

at that volume.
It was a feeling strong enough

you could almost convince everyone
it was your strength.

And your motorcycle.
How I cow to it,

my ambition.
I bow humbly before

my masochism,
my flagellation

rehearsing now
recreationally what a fool

I was before
the King of Cool—

what I spread out
like a banquet,

and plying my nicest china!
Now to pull out the tablecloth

in one grand flourish,
magic-trick take it all back—

(except what awkward
upturned silver and wobbling

cups remain.)
Then again,

it’s always been
everyone’s big night out

but mine, my hair
in the drain every time.



bell color




Elizabeth Whittlesey
is a budding energy healer psychic shamaness earth & light warrior who hails from Utah and lives in New York.  She was a featured guest on WKCR’s “Studio A” this past August, and her poems have appeared in journals including Gulf Coast, jubilat, Boston Review, Crazyhorse, BETTER, Two Serious Ladies, and POOL.




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