How to be paid one circles

Round as maybe is requited

By being very nice

Like tenders of difficult men

Of whom we know a herd

Loved as old pillows filled

With personal dust. Yuck.

By difficult I mean brilliant

Smarts hard. I mean flashlights

Beat ahead on the trail

To the far pen where men

Feel ill, retch, eat grass.

You'll be better. We're just

Enough to clean the mess

Seeing stars. On my own

Utterly on my very our.

His coins glowering

Her thigh are slimy

Beautiful. He builds

A home by the fence

And the river difficult men

Cannot cross but women

Like invert snails carry

Small fine houses. Quite fine

And not too small.


I just want urban! Just want

Something that just feels

Old ladies wear urban

Little boys talk urban

Nobody but nerds don't want

Urban you're some king in

Exile in exurbs like me

We're just the same after

All what's history our imagining

Fails the same our tennis

Whites light our hearts

We offend just alike it's no

Skin off your back mine

Aren't we post post and we

Want it all real please

Can't I get it?


Cecily Iddings' first book, Everyone Here, was published by Octopus Books in 2014. Her recent poems can be found in Apartment, Atlas Review, Horse Less Review, Prelude, Sixth Finch, and The Volta, among other places. She lives and teaches in Brooklyn.