Eight poems by Chelsey Minnis

Art: Three Women

You’re a pretty attractive burglar.
Can’t you do me a lot of favors?
But, let’s not have any lines of dialogue between us!
I’m trying to make you last a long time.
You see, my boredom is legendary.


I don’t like to be bored. I love to be bored.
It’s also time to be terrific.
I couldn’t live without being so terrific.
Now give me your drama,
like little bits of flesh among the diamonds.


Now, I’m going to stay dumb.
I’m going to need some help.
Baby why don’t you give me some money so I can get rich?
Oh, how many times I’ve hurt you!
And each time is precious to me.

Let me tell you how I know things.
I just think about them very hard.
And then I get ideas.
And maybe they’re the right ideas and maybe they’re the wrong ideas.
Now, can’t you try that?


This is better than an action. It’s a word.
A word like a piano in a submarine.
What will you do? Fall asleep in your fur coat?
I won’t even try to be civilized where you’re concerned.
I like parties where half the people wear swimsuits and the other half wears  tuxedos.


I am sorry for slapping your face!
And now let me begin 77 sunsets without you.
Let me whisper into your dictaphone.
“I murdered my pet canary.”
Behold my dazzling mental illness like a chandelier.

Now we’re going to go down to the bottom and see if we like it.
I’m going to maul your head with my words.
I have to gesture with a turkey leg while I argue all my points.
This poem is a display case for expletives.
And all the baby dolls have recorded cries.


This is the time to be congenial but I can’t make it.
I’m the type who never likes your type.
Don’t you see?
We’re filthy in love.
Let’s get some rice thrown on us.

Chelsey Minnis was born in Dallas and grew up in Denver. She attended the University of Colorado at Boulder and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She is the author of Poemland (Wave Books 2009), Zirconia (Fence Books, 2001), Foxina (Seeing Eye Books, 2002) and Bad Bad (Fence Books, 2007). She lives in Boulder, Colorado.

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