My Body as a Communist Country

Its betrayal totalitarian—
skin dry as parchment

            lit by the slightest brush.
The scent in our

sheets sets off chimes,
a measure until you

The minutes I swallow whole.

Castro, you've nothing in Cuba like my desire.

            My body's capitalism,
greedy. It's a slow-jam

in a darkened room
keeping time with a DJ.

            Its lyric, the blue light of aging shadows

desire's waking. Ten years from now
            we'll wonder at this

my body's exacting power
            brooking no opposition.


Originally published in Copper Nickel.




My Body as The Tropicana Nightclub, 1952

My body’s Arcos de Cristal lined
     in licentious points of light.

It’s the crème de la crème and the güempa.
     It’s a legendary simmer.

             ¡Mami estás matandome!

It’s Latin Jazz syncopation.
             The trumpets hold its melody.

             Roulette, Baccarat, Craps, 21—
my body, the flashy casino of beauty.

It’s the showgirl girdled in orchids
between sets, and it’s her sequins’ shimmer.

Its bolero—lie to me, tell me you love
             me, even if I know you don’t.


Originally published in North American Review.




Suzanne Frischkorn is the author of Lit Windowpane (2008), Girl on a Bridge (2010), and five chapbooks, most recently American Flamingo (2008). She serves as an assistant editor for Anti-.

Read poetry by Suzanne Frischkorn also appearing in Issue 18.

Tropicana sign photo courtesy Shutterstock.

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One Response

  1. Mary-Jo Waterbury

    These poems are beautiful! I love the imagery, and how she uses the idea of her own body embodying other ideas to make a statement at the end of the poem. The ends are so subtle and well worded. Not only did the poems have great imagery, but they also were very relatable even though I have never had the exact same experiences as these. I really like Suzanne Frischkorn’s work here. Wonderful poetry!

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