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Elizabeth Bishop
B. 2.8.11 Worcester, Massachusetts / D. 10.6.79 Boston
Cerebral Aneurysm

Last dispatches from the Dyke March—

An unmade exchange with the girls from the Long Island Jewish Fisting Club:
“My what chic eyeglasses you wear to match your matching t-shirts!”
“All the better to watch each other fisting you, my dear!”
I am out of place here.

beamed from the midst of its translucent caterpillar belly as the Dyke March shimmied down Fifth Avenue—

Unasked of the last of the ass-in-chaps-revealing biker-style cruisers, a relic in angel wings feathered and meager and black, very party store (saved from extinction—by irony!):
“So—have you been out long?”

past the Empire State Building being phallic—again—

“Trannies”—a word that slips my mind from year to year.
A butch or two looking good but then you remember the clinging, the indolence—no matter what they say they always do—how fundamentally they crave the La-Z-Boy and the good woman bringing. . .whatever.
I’m not bringing it.

past the birthplace of Positive Thinking—through bawdy serenades—

Harmonizing beside their big fading banner outside Marble Collegiate, the men of Church Ladies for Choice impress as a dwindling core supported by last minute phone calls (untapped: “So what if they don’t APPRECIATE us—I’m doing this for ME!”) and half-measure drag. When the holy eunuchs of the ancient matriarchal world tired of choir duty, they might have let the same mechanical edge creep into their praise-songs; this one concludes, to the tune of My Country ‘Tis of Thee:
“Send her Victoria,
Mary and Gloria,
She’ll lick clit on the floor with ya,
God is a dyke!”
I mean, God Save the Queen.

between the canyon banks above Chelsea, pooling with late afternoon shadows.

My view from inside an urn carved out of air like alabaster—
my view of the female figures pressed in relief on its sanded walls:
forests of limbs fixed at rest or in postures of flinging; orchards of novelty haircuts and bare-shorn skulls; complications of contour effected by heartbreak and piercing—
full on, they’re still silhouettes to me.
And I can see all the fake cocks they left at home.

Last transmission before contact’s lateral abandonment at 25th Street—down which hollyhocks beckoned.

Oooh whispers! What is everybody whispering? Shirts off at 23rd Street! Good God—looking around—I don’t want to see that!
Hollyhocks, and people in saris.

Consolation Site: Morbid—And Pinsky—But Irresistible

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