Russell Jaffe

posted in: Issue 1 | 1

Two Poems


Nobody’s body does the body things your body does.

Everything there is hemorrhaging oxygen.

It’s messy. It’s obnoxious. It’s a mystery.

I took pictures of the badly dried park all died across from your place but they all suck.

It was just dusk and the sun fried all the trees into burnt strips of bacon.

Dead fish and dust tried to crawl corpse chalk outlines of water into wobbly heat mirrors.

This is supposed to be a blue planet. I like places that only do one item. A muffin store that makes only muffins. A mac and cheese outlet that only makes mac and cheese.

A revolving door outlet store for fecund infections that distribute only festering

oily discharges. An ocean that is only an ocean. These places

they exist therefore

cosmopolitanly. An ocean of vaginal fluid. An ocean of just fluid. An ocean of gelatinous overnight fluids in glasses and couch stains. A stockpile of label-removed Juicy Juice cans. Post-Juicy-Juice survivor communities. An ocean that’s an index of flavored colors.  Mystery fluid is blue.




Time is sugar in the county fair cotton candy spinner. Time is all at once slow drips. Time explodes.

Someone trigger tripped my wires and I blew ballistic

pouring drinks over my head to mock the shy rain.

Word got out quickly. The party got crowded.

The jello shots were a wonderful rainbow.

The tornado sirens were going off and a phalanx of rain surrounded the house.

I refused to surrender. I put on a top 40 playlist and leaves filled every room. I ate

leaves and candy and chips. I forced a video cassette of collapsing buildings into myself.

I ate the house.

I ate all the furniture.

Everyone watched me eat a hole in the wall and run into the night.

It is such a still morning. The rain sits at the foot of my bed with its head cocked

about to cry and smiling. There there the rain says

to the belly of me. When it comes to rainbows you’re what just doesn’t touch the ground.

You are somewhere sometime but not for



sometimes I log onto your Netflix

and see what you’ve watched recently

wherever you are.

You’ve moved on to some new shows. I am watching you finding new ways

to make time go.



Picture of Russell JaffeRussell Jaffe lives in Iowa City, where he makes art, teaches high school English, and is the Co-Editor of Strange Cage (, a handmade chapbook poetry press, and MC of its reading series. He is the author of one poetry collection, This Super Doom I Aver (Poets Democracy, ’13) and the chapbooks DOOM’D zone 1 and zone 2 (Strange Cage, ’12), (accompanied by pushpins and balloons) (The Red Ceilings, ’11), and note/worthy (Scantily Clad, ’08). His poems have appeared in The Colorado Review, DIAGRAM, H_NGM_N, American Letters & Commentary, [PANK], and others. He collects 8-tracks. Get at him at

One Response

  1. […] And then shifting gears: great poems and stories in the well-designed new Beetroot (are circles the new white space in web design?), which I dunno if my favorites in there are lazy or not, even this new positively connotated idea of “lazy,” but they are full of travel and danger and white particle that part like Jello and adzuki beans and bird riding and pee filtering and nobody’s body doing the body things your body does. […]

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