Monday, January 9, 2012

3 Poems by Helen Vitoria

Helen Vitoria’s work can be found in many journals: elimae, PANK, MudLuscious Press, Foundling Review, Rougarou, FRIGG Magazine, Dark Sky Magazine and others. She is the author of three chapbooks and a full length poetry collection: Corn Exchange forthcoming from Scrambler Books. Her poems have been nominated for Best New Poets & the Pushcart Prize. She is the Founding Editor & Editor in Chief of THRUSH Poetry Journal & THRUSH Press. Find her here:

'Barbie cuts herself, again' by Helen Vitoria

While Barbie cleans up blood in the kitchen, after having nearly severed her index finger, I have the same iron taste in my mouth as when I watched his face as he lied to me. A hurried rush of Red on Black, streaming & violent, a stoned-dogma, a splayed bend at the knee to quickly clean a mess up: gauze-like, thin-bandaged, blood-soaked ephemera flung aside. I light a cigarette, watch her tend to the wound. I will not. I will not. I will not. Swallow this again. Barbie goes loose & shadowlike, falls hard on the kitchen floor, just like the first time.

[first published at]

'Preparing the Body' by Helen Vitoria

We will meet the body under the stairs and tell no one what we touch there

We will envision the mouth of the body moving in strange song

We will touch the body as if a delicate sand castle blown over

We will let the body be a shade tree, crawling with spiders

We will smear it with honey and wait for it to crack its legs open

We will allow the body to skim water, to come undone

We will teach it the definition of lost and dark wine

We will let it run in Central Park with lambs

We will reach its lungs in a rage of whispers

We will teach it prayer and how to work its way back into the world

We will welcome it onto a green windowsill filled with death

We will write it inscriptions while weeping under fireworks

We will watch the body be beaten into disgrace

We will teach the body bone silence and call it witchcraft

We will take its dignity and arrange it in snow

We will recognize the body in traffic lights and be reminded of carnivals

We will spread the body, use thumb and palm and say: here, be happy

[first published at EXCLUSIVE Magazine,]

'Buddha' by Helen Vitoria

I meet him on the internet. Then I meet him in an artsy cafe in South Philadelphia. He brings his dog, Buddha, an Akita, who has been fed too much. Buddha loves this man. Buddha has secrets in his teeth. We sit next to a giant poster that reads: Once you go Black you never go back. He says he is a true modern day renaissance man. I do not know what that means and I do not think I care. He appeals to my creative side, tells me he’s a photographer, and pulls out his iPhone to show me his portfolio. I trace the outline of his cock through denim with my eyes. The photos are of mostly unattractive people smiling in faraway places. Places he says he’s been. Also, still life shots of large steel things, buildings, and sculptures, one of a well hung man peeing in a fountain. He wears diamond stud earrings and every sentence starts with I. He notices a tattoo on my wrist. He wants a portrait of Jimi Hendrix on his back, but has not found the right artist who will tattoo him perfectly. Says: I always wanted to photograph a woman with ink. I tell him I have 40 tattoos. Buddha licks gently at the sac that used to hold his balls.

[First published at]