Nomad by Jennifer Lagier

I wake among remote dunes
when cold beach sand
ices my bones,
beard sparkles with frost.
The adopted Australian Shepard
who contributes body heat,
barks at unwanted intruders,
stirs, stiffly rises, stretches,
expects to be fed.

I panhandle what I can from commuters
paused at the freeway exit stop sign.
Score enough to purchase Red Bull,
dry kibble at the 7-11, then meander
to the wetlands gathering spot
where fellow homeless men,
shaken from coastal thickets by sunrise
congregate beneath a fallen willow.

We hoist a torn red tee shirt,
claim this bruised territory
our brief sanctuary
where we’ll bullshit, pass the bottle,
eventually pass out in the afternoon sun.

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Ellis Island Reversal by Jennifer Lagier

Lady Liberty has been laid off,
torch extinguished,
welcome plaque censored,
toll booth installed.

Immigration has been demonized,
myth of terrorists overrunning borders
propagated by white supremacists,
spread by Faux News.

We’ve forgotten our foreign grandparents,
herded through cattle chutes, taken ashore.
Their stooped backs, straining shoulders
pushed the nation’s economy, democracy’s cogs.

Now hate-inflamed extremists
drape themselves in Confederate flags,
march through America’s corrupted heartland,
wave flaming torches, blood dripping clubs.

..

Jennifer Lagier has published thirteen books, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press), Camille Abroad (FutureCycle Press). Forthcoming publications: Like a B Movie (Feb. 2018) and Camille Mobilizes (Dec. 2018), (FutureCycle Press, 2018). Website: jlagier.net

Tiny Agonies by Jennifer Lagier

Camille sips hot coffee,
scrolls through Internet headlines:
Porn Star Says Trump Bad in Bed;
Nuclear War, Extreme Weather
Top List of 2018 Threats;
Marathon Running Mom, 10-Year-Old
Boy Latest Flu Victims;
China space station packed with
‘CANCEROUS chemicals’
to crash into Earth ‘within MONTHS’.

She is fed up starting every morning
with elevated blood pressure, wanting
to vaporize Washington DC,
exterminate White House residents,
migrate to a remote forest
or desert island
to escape rampant stupidity.
There aren’t enough bong hits
to erase oppressive, offensive reality.

Instead, she drags out magic marker,
a huge sheet of poster board,
creates a protest sign
with scathing message, pointed graphics.
She’ll share her anger and energy
with vibrant, vocal, voting females.
at the local Women’s March,
Together, they will oust inept,
sexist clowns currently in power,
bring back intelligent, humane behavior,
take over all levels of government,
make the world sane.

President Turd by Jennifer Lagier

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.” – Emma Lazarus

“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” – Donald J. Trump

 

The statue of liberty weeps as
right-wing Panderer-in-Chief
disparages dark-skinned immigrants,
labels them undesirable, unwanted.

He prefers white folks, like Norwegians,
encourages their unfettered migration
into the cesspool of what once was
an egalitarian, welcoming land.

Republican enablers down pedal his racist vulgarity.
From the other side of the aisle, a handful
of outraged politicians take the xenophobic dotard
illegitimately inhabiting the White House to task.

.

Dr. Jennifer Lagier
http://jlagier.net

They’ll Learn the Real Story Soon Enough by Jennifer Lagier

For every stone Mueller overturns,
up squirms money launderers,
Russian trolls, berserk Neo-Nazis.

Republicans collaborate
with Faux News talking heads
to dismiss treasonous findings.

America assumes hatred
will bring back
mythical “good old days.”

A dystopian paradise for wealthy white men.
No uppity women, labor unions,
people of color.

Each day, they dismantle, destroy,
conveniently forget blatant oppression
brews revolution.

Christmas Gift by Jennifer Lagier

“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.” –Franklin Delano Roosevelt

 

While children and indigents starve,
survive in alleys, cardboard box ghettos,
fat-cats celebrate the Prince of Payola
who has just given them a generous
Christmas gift of inordinate tax cuts.

Pharisees and their sycophants
repossess temples, erect golden idols.
A harsh regime suppresses free speech,
replaces truth with self-serving commercials.

A rough beast slouches toward Bethlehem
where he lifts his leg, pisses on the poor.
An antichrist brutally seizes the throne.
Timid kings keep their distance.

..

Jennifer Lagier has published thirteen books of poetry, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review. Her forthcoming books include Like a B Movie and Camille Mobilizes, both scheduled for publication by FutureCycle Press. Visit her website at jlagier.net

The Arena by Jennifer Lagier

The latest of President Pussy Grabber’s

crude, clueless appointees

has lasted less than ten days.

Fired after ranting on video

“I’m not Steve Bannon,

trying to suck my own cock.”

The Mooch eagerly fluffs

batshit Cheeto-in-Charge

as his fed-up wife

files for divorce.

 

Pundits guess

how long other staffers

will remain before

they are thrown under

the vindictive orange bus

or voluntarily abandon

a sinking clown car administration.

 

On Face the Nation,

one talking head

predicts an immediate pivot

to more dignified behavior,

fewer embarrassing leaks

now that there’s a

new sheriff in town.

 

Wanna place any bets?

The Longest Gamble by Jennifer Lagier

The presidential apprentice

gambles for ratings,

pardons a racist sheriff

to pre-empt sentencing

for his conviction,

then incarceration

 

After U.S. threats

of fire and fuy,

North Korea launches missiles

that sail over northern Japan.

The skies fling hurricanes,

tornados, 50 inches of rain.

Flood waters rise, cover red Texas.

 

It’s a feeding frenzy

of conspiracy theorists,

right-wing radicals,

climate change deniers

whose crackpot beliefs

now pervert the White House.

 

We’re on our own during

democracy’s deconstruction,

Constitutional crisis.

Ethics, integrity crumble.

Russia laughs; their boy is in charge.

Treason, corruption, hypocrisy burgeon.

..

Jennifer Lagier currently hides among sand dunes at the edge of the Pacific Ocean to escape the ongoing decline of discourse and democracy in the U.S. Website: jlagier.net

The Unfairness of the Game by Jennifer Lagier

“There’s a group of guys in a back room somewhere that are making decisions.”
 – Sen. Claire McCasgill

 

Thirteen Republican white men

hide behind a locked door as they

craft a bill to control women’s bodies.

 

They operate in a vacuum of facts,

base legislation on lethal ignorance,

disproved urban legends:

 

If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body

has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.

 

Who needs abortion when victims of sexual assault

can just get “cleaned out” by a rape kit?

 

Women shouldn’t terminate pregnancies

resulting from rape because it’s what God intended.

 

Abortion is much more serious

than the rape of children by priests.

 

Abortion rights caused the Sandy Hook massacre.

 

Abortion is just like the Holocaust.

If babies had guns, they wouldn’t be aborted.

 

Rape is okay when the victim seems

“older than her chronological age.”

 

Getting an abortion after being raped

is criminal evidence tampering. 

 

Senators refuse to share a draft

for review or public comment.

We aren’t stupid, says a GOP aide.

 

Those of us with vaginas,

prior experience, much to lose,

have a different opinion.

No Reason to Laugh by Jennifer Lagier

Just in time for an investigation

of collusion with Russia,

America’s idiot-in-chief

returns to home shores

from his big-boy overseas trip.

 

While a polarized committee

issues swaths of subpoenas,

he wants to return seized embassies.

Disrespected, demoted, dismissed

intel employees line up to vent.

 

Administrative surrogates offer

outrageous excuses

which their bloated orange leader

flatly denies.

Political uproar ensues.

 

Leaks multiply.

Whistleblowers face persecution.

The GOP spins irrefutable facts.

Presidential tweets spew,

contradict White House lawyers.

 

Evidence of illegal obstruction persists.

We’re in dark territory,

worse than Watergate.

Democracy teeters on the brink

of constitutional crisis.

Punishment is Love by Jennifer Lagier

I ache for the touch of your lips, dear,
But much more for the touch of your whips, dear.
You can raise welts
Like nobody else,
As we dance to the masochism tango.”

–Tom Lehrer, The Masochism Tango

 

America, each day you seduce,

promise happy-ever-after,

deliver sadistic cruelty.

Debase human decency.

Pillage the poor.

Give to the rich.

Humiliate, torture,

tell the gullible powerless

this is tough love.

 

A masochistic electorate

clings to its fictions,

gladly relinquishes control,

surrenders liberty, will.

Passively offers itself

to corrupt dominants who

overpower, abuse.

The broken beg

for brutal punishment,

unending pain.

Nothing is their fault.

They ecstatically bleed.

..

Jennifer Lagier has published thirteen books, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press), Camille Abroad (FutureCycle Press). Forthcoming: Like a B Movie(FutureCycle Press, 2018). Website: jlagier.net Facebook: www.facebook.com/JenniferLagier/

America’s Bad Romance by Jennifer Lagier

I want your ugly
I want your disease
I want your everything
As long as it’s free” – Lady Gaga

 

Go ahead–lie.

Spin actionable treason into fresh innovation.

Deny investigative journalists access.

Disseminate fake news.

Label whistleblowers

sad, over-rated.

 

Tweet cognitive dissonance,

threats, juvenile tantrums.

Promise vague generalities.

Flatter uneducated supporters.

Persecute opponents.

 

Use the Presidency

to enable nepotism,

even scores,

line the pockets

of your billionaire friends.

.

Given Over to the Pettiest Rancor by Jennifer Lagier

At night, paranoid Donald

snorts cocaine,

grows agitated,

imagines humiliating

then snuffing detractors,

blots out insecurity

with juvenile tweets.

 

He possesses a two-year-old’s

unfiltered hair trigger temper.

Could easily start

World War III

because of personal insult,

bloated self-importance,

uncontained ego.

 

We are hostages

unwillingly trapped

inside a pirated

ship of state,

rudderless,

engines blown,

at the tipping point

to slip under water.

 

Jennifer Lagier has published thirteen books, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press), Camille Abroad (FutureCycle Press). Forthcoming: Like a B Movie (FutureCycle Press, 2018). Website: : : Poetry by Jennifer Lagier : :

Deal with the Devil by Jennifer Lagier

“To say it is amateur hour at the White House is to slander amateurs.” – David Brooks

 

Faustian GOP legislators
support white nationalism,
sell what remains of their souls
to maintain a death-grip on power.

When conventional law doesn’t permit
unconstitutional executive orders
or appointment of unvetted incompetents,
they change rules in their favor.

A small clique of bigoted
bloggers and tweeters
embargo communication
with actual doers.

Power intoxicates,
encourages opportunistic amateurs
to deliver cruel payback,
pull life and death levers.

..

Jennifer Lagier has published thirteen books, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press), Camille Abroad (FutureCycle Press). Forthcoming: Like a B Movie (FutureCycle Press, 2018). Website: : : Poetry by Jennifer Lagier : :

Siege by Jennifer Lagier

Unrestrained vaginas

are the new enemy.

President Batshit Cheeto

declares war on women.

Dedicates himself to

future wife fetuses

and grabbing pussy.

He cannot abide the thought

of an unregulated uterus.

Despises feminist empowerment

or sexual freedom.

Prefers golden shower orgies

with call girls

to unfettered females.

Tastes Bitter by Jennifer Lagier

The newly-anointed Cheeto-in-chief

surrounds himself with authoritarian white men,

signs draconian orders—

issues a global gag rule,

complete roll-back of environmental protections,

disconnects the public comments switchboard,

scrubs White House website.

 

On Day Two,

he claims millions voted illegally,

short-lists potential Supreme Court justices,

rabid conservatives favoring curtailment

of first amendment rights, civil liberties,

unreasonable searches and seizures.

He green lights controversial pipelines,

bans federal agencies from social media,

insists on a total news blackout.

 

California’s Governor calls out Trump’s universe of non-facts.

Constitutional experts document President Pussy Grabber’s

violation of the emoluments clause, file a lawsuit.

The rest of us bombard legislators with demands,

vow not to take this shit lying down

like good little Germans.

 

 

Jennifer Lagier has published thirteen books, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press), Camille Abroad (FutureCycle Press). Forthcoming: Like a B Movie (FutureCycle Press, 2018). Website: : : Poetry by Jennifer Lagier : :

We Ponder Our Imbecilities by Jennifer Lagier

Frenzied Trumpsters growl,

seethe in the streets.

Turn out for rallies where

their filterless leader

pushes them over the edge

with resentment and hate.

 

Like Pavlov’s dogs,

the rabble salivates,

ready to savage anyone different

when he bellows gun control lies,

anti-immigrant sound bites,

waves a red flag.

 

Denied access to the American dream,

an emotionally manipulated mob

ignores statistics, reality,

undermines their own interests.

Brainwashed, they support

condescending economic elites.

 

Brief bio:
Jennifer Lagier has published twelve books and in literary magazines, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press). Forthcoming chapbook:, Camille Abroad (FutureCycle). Website: http://jlagier.net

Home Sweet Home by Jennifer Lagier

Hospice arranges transport,

delivers the necessary equipment

because mom wants to come home.

Gentle paramedics maneuver

her gurney across threshold,

navigate narrow hallway,

settle her into the hospital bed

in the den where she will spend

the rest of her life.

 

She is able to breakfast

at the kitchen table,

shuffle two or three laps

around the living room

with her walker before

snuggling into leather recliner

with paper, blanket,

steaming hot toddy.

 

Friends and neighbors

arrive in shifts

to deliver flowers,

pay their final respects.

Soon every surface

is covered with bouquets,

chilling precursor

of inevitable funeral day.

Like a Movie by Jennifer Lagier

An interchangeable cast

of cranky actors costumed as nurses

or white-coated specialists

move in and out

of your hospital room.

 

They ignore the name

listed above your bed,

printed upon wrist band.

Wordlessly perform a variety

of medical functions.

 

So far, they’ve pricked

your finger, mistaking you

for the unresponsive diabetic

on the opposite gurney.

 

Administered respiratory therapy

intended for a guy across the hall.

Tried to dose you with

the incorrect chemo.

 

Food service bungles

90% of your orders.

Twice they forget

to deliver your dinner.

 

Over and over

you remind them

you can walk on your own

when they insist

on a walker or wheelchair.

 

You wonder if the pathology report

of metastasized malignancy

actually belongs to you.

Try to convince yourself

it’s just one more mistake.

 

 

Malpractice by Jennifer Lagier

For six months

mom has complained

of stomach pain

to her impatient doctor.

His records document

breast cancer surgery,

chemotherapy, radiation,

spread of malignant cells

into her stomach.

 

Despite her history,

no new scans are ordered.

He tells her she’s

just getting old.

The breathlessness,

exhaustion and weight loss,

common symptoms of aging.

 

When she develops bloating,

severe constipation,

he prescribes an

over the counter laxative,

sends her off for an x-ray,

says all is normal.

 

A week after she collapses

from debilitating diarrhea,

is taken to emergency by paramedics,

a consulting gastroenterologist

discovers an intestinal blockage.

Seven days later, a surgeon

opens her to reveal

the inoperable cancer.

..

Jennifer Lagier has published twelve books and in literary magazines, taught with California Poets in the Schools, co-edits the Homestead Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Newest books: Scene of the Crime (Evening Street Press), Harbingers (Blue Light Press). Forthcoming chapbook:, Camille Abroad (FutureCycle). Website: http://jlagier.net