Issue 18: Charlie Baylis

J E N N N Y S I S  [p r o l o g u e]

one night in middlesex      

reading phillipson's instantflex    a mad science man [prof jex]

pulled apart the loaves of a lady's legs          

one night in middlesex    reading teletext

toy plane lodged in anus    the speed blurred

along an airfield    jex waved goodbye to m of jenny x     

o's when the images tripled in the image teller's telex

ah's when the glitter trembled in the beautiful womb

o's when out popped jenny x       ravaged with life

m dead             jex scrawled an x on her felt tip head    

jenny x did not know the gender at her apex

she flipped a coin      became the stronger sex          xy not xx

no joke    rp hex    old news     prof jex    what s next

T I R E D  O F  T H E  F E M A L E  M U S E

tired of the female muse in my poetry

let's pretend i'm walking down jenny west    heartbeat

twinkling about something else    strawberries find me

in fields     in minnesotan peas    upside down in the cabins

of the cutty sark      eating tomato soup with my fingers

the salt mine and the salt mine museum attached to the

salt mine    wait! it's the other way round!

jenny west opens out onto jenny east    streets!

not the girls! elizabeth iela is prettiest street in latvia

let's pretend i'm heading south down the female muse    oops! i mean         

heading south down a street    imagine:

my poetry absent of a female muse

while you do that i will take a walk to the job centre

sew a see-through patch to my genes

G O D I M I S S Y O U J E N N Y  X

god i miss you jenny x

these nights that are not yet green     not yet ours

when we're not yet the people we will become

god i miss you jenny x

the hippos trampling the swastika on your thigh

the leather almonds melting in space

what has become you jenny x    you used to be a holy poet

now you are a hat stand

you used to go-go granada with gold garcia-lorca eye-liner

you used to peel the pearls of every pea in the pen drive

now i cannot even name what swirls inside you    now i cannot even hold you

on the nights that are not yet green   not yet ours     gone to the left      gone to the right

and everything all up in smoke like   star bright knickers    when you came

glittering with metropolis   

Charlie Baylis is from Nottingham. He studies irony in the back of his mind. He has published two pamphlets Elizabeth (agave press) and hilda doolittle´s carl jung t-shirt (erbacce). A poem of his is featured in Best New British and Irish poets 2017 (Eyewear Press). He spends his spare time completely adrift of reality.