Leveler Poetry Journal
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Is Vanishing

is a pretty princess / is ripe for parody / is a dork / is as mad

as hell, and not going to take this anymore / is at two with

nature / has had it up to here with winter / is moving / is

putting things in a row and then knocking them down one by

one by one / is James Dean / doesn’t understand why

sportscasters don’t snicker when they say “Magic Johnson” /

is on repeat / is bursting with fruit flavor / knows he can’t

have you / is crushing your head / is close to midnight and

knows Tivo® makes it happen / is electric! / is a solid object

moving in interplanetary space, of a size considerably smaller

than an asteroid and considerably larger than an atom heading

straight for you! / is funny ha-ha, not funny strange / bends

metal with his mind / is running for cover and discovering

the difference between clay and silt / runs / jumps the fence

/ clears the magnolias / breaks through the glass door /

catches the pie / saves the day / has been shorn / feels it all,

sometimes all at once, but often it comes in waves of

incremental periods of rushed excitement / missed the

announcement on the loudspeaker to assemble, then laid

down in a ditch and pretended to be dead / is a sad tomato /

wonders what business is it of your where he’s from, friendo?

/ is alone at the movies / needs a bigger boat / plays guitar in

the mirror / is uncool / uses his neighbors’ names for his

characters / bangs the drum / is sharing apples with the

orchard / feels like a zombie / is aware that there are things

here that might resemble backwards motion / begins with a

capital letter and proceeds to make a movement across the

page / is open to sophomore slumps / is okay with the idea

that wind won’t blow through your hair when we kiss /

squeaks when he walks / knows the distance has been

murder / spits when he talks creating monsters all around /

lays motionless on the hardwood in the hotel room / is on

his back waiting for an itch to scratch / wants to believe in a

heaven and will go on living as if he does / is a self-serving

seahorse / is a lion with earmuffs / is a turtle dragging his

shell behind him / is a pigeon with a parachute. / can’t have

it all / can’t feel his legs / imagines a day without sunshine

and smiles / brings himself back to life every morning at 2:50

am / is a worldwide fashion icon, pop culture princess, and a

global brand powerhouse / thinks of a happier time / begins

to notice when you’re not around / falls asleep anytime he

wants / is sad to see you go / abandoned himself and those

he cares for / is not deaf / heard the phone ringing and

realized it was on the screen / originally cast the role as a man

/ changed everyone’s lines the day of the shoot / can’t

remember a time that he laughed so hard / shares an affinity

for you / dresses like a clown when he’s in Wisconsin /

pretends dollar coins are sunken treasure / wishes he could at

least breathe underwater /  handles the bludgeon himself/

responds accordingly / thinks tee vee is better than film at

the moment / wants wine and cheese this time around / can’t

believe it’s still light outside / doesn’t mind the extra fifteen

minutes it takes to get there / fades to black / feels better

having seen everything he has seen / can and will / stays as

the credits roll / puts the match in the gas tank. Boom.

Boom / doesn’t understand how anyone could ever write a

book on accounting / wishes he could still smoke in this cold

theatre / burns the house to the ground to save everyone

from embarrassment / throws the garbage can through the

glass window / hangs from the bottom of the space ship,

screaming / did everything, everything for you / knows that

at this moment he is the only one to ever do this one thing at

this exact moment / wants to know if you heard that / stands

on your street holding the boombox high / drinks your

milkshake / is one in a long line of disasters / is a cannibal

and a thief who steals and steals and steals everything from

everyone / is honored just to be nominated / wishes Heath

Ledger was still around / knows that nothing can bring back

the hour of splendor in the grass / has provided a pair of

safety glasses and some earplugs under your seats.  Please feel

free to use them / knows this happens.  This is something

that happens / lives in 3-D everyday / would say, “that’s

that,” Mattress Man / buries his head in the sand / is a

mouseapotamus / gets lost in the mise-en-scène / can’t count

on you / feels relieved to know that tomorrow the sun will

still be the sun / is convinced his gut has shit for brains / is

making lists of his favorite albums and putting them in order

of release, importance, and when they were purchased /

heads for the hills / wishes his fish wouldn’t eat his friends /

borrows things, bends them, and then never gives them back

/ rewinds / dives into the madness / brings up things at the

wrong time / wonders what went wrong and where he could

get it repaired / carries a book with nothing in it / believes

that statues like being settled in grassy areas in the shade /

values your opinion, but really only wants you to agree with

the decision he has already made / can’t decipher between

want and need / breaks down and goes to the record shop

again / uses his rearview as camera 1 and sideview as camera

2 / knows where he can find you when he needs you / opens

the box of ghosts slowly and closes his eyes quickly / knows

a carpenter’s cup when he sees one / breaks bread with the

masses / pokes holes in the jar in order to breathe / breaks

the waves / kills the sheep / influences strangers / pretends

to write poems / winces at the thought of being admired / is

a well-respected man / can’t control his shrugging / would

love to chat, but he’s off to work right now / sleeps on a bed

of California stars / destroys things with jackhammers and

mallets / snores in his sleep now / remembers the diving

board that was converted into a bench for bonfires / walks

the long walk / is [               ] / is Jack Kerouacing his way

through page after page of nonsensical bullshit / is

sharpening his teeth / is content with this time around / is

taking the stairs to Mars / is taking a train / knows Judd

Apatow / calls his own phone just to hear the busy tone /

hangs around outside until the last person leaves / is still

alive, despite what you may have heard / finds you lovely and

distracting / has a weakness for angora sweaters / drinks

coffee, but hates the taste / killed Superman / does his own

stunts / thinks the joke is still funny / thinks Mary Tyler

Moore is the only person who should wear Capri pants /

can’t tell the difference between Bill Pullman and Bill Paxton

/ wants you to be happy no matter who makes you happy /

likes you the way you are / could drink a case of you and still

be on his feet / is ordered in a system of color-codes and

decimal points / is not your wishing well or your front porch

swing / is close / is not finished /

Andrew Terhune