April 15, 2005

A “Coherent and Substantive Publication”

A “Coherent and Substantive Publication”

As pretty much the entire World-Wide Web knows by now, dear reader, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” have announced our Second Annual Horrible College-Student Poetry Competition. And, as you might imagine, we’ve been flooded with deliciously execrable poesy from our entrants.

We hope, dear reader, to receive as many submissions as possible. Call us dreamers, but we think that pretty much every one of us has a terrible collegiate poem inside of them. Or at least right next to them.

In today’s humble post, then, we plan to do our best to exhort you to send us some pseudo-poetic drivel. And we figured that an example of the real thing just might get your creative juices flowing.

The venerable Duke University, like pretty much every college in these here United States of America, is home to a “Women’s Center.” It’s a safe-haven for women to contemplate their oppression, before they drive their Range Rovers out for a hearty meal at the local four-star restaurant.

Yet the Duke University Women’s Center does not only function as a place for mildly anorexic upper-middle class females to wax vulvic about the patriarchy. It also publishes Voices magazine, which allows mildly anorexic upper-middle class females to wax vulvic about the patriarchy. No one trick pony here!

Recently, a correspondent from our Durham (NC) office sent us the Spring 2005 number of Voices. And, believe us, dear reader, it’s the real deal: Its pages are teeming with inscrutably wretched poetry and prose.

The editrix of Voices, one Holly Anne Manning, informs her reader(s) that she “received over 160 submissions of prose, poetry, art, and photography, reviewed them anonymously, and selected what we believe to be the very best.” She tells us that “Gender is the common thread binding all the issues into a coherent and substantive publication.”

160 submissions? A “coherent and substantive publication”? Someone ought to introduce Ms. Manning—a rather male last name, that—to the contents of her magazine.

For instance, there’s the first sentence of “Oof,” an essay by one Alicia Manning. (We’re glad the reviews were done anonymously. Clearly, talent runs in the Manning family.) It reads: “The first time I farted in front of Nick was Thursday, January 17, 2002, at 7:28 a.m.”

To which we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” respond: Well, gee, thanks for sharing. How very substantive.

But nothing beats the contribution of one Greg Richard Bernard. He has composed a poem entitled “her,” which appears to be a disquisition on his status as a “gender vampire.” The last lines of said poem are so delightfully horrid that we simply had to share them with you:

queer. yet not gay.
penis. yet not male.
Woman. yet no vagina (lost with my breasts
in the cosmic comedy that engulfs
airport luggage and dryer socks).
left behind to tumble, alone.
screaming. trapped in genetic silence.
Woman? yes, I am
a vampire. but do not fear me.

this succubus feeds on Herself alone.

We hate to ruin the “genetic silence,” but we can’t stop laughing. And this fellow calls airport luggage a “cosmic comedy”? He should try reading one of his own poems aloud.

In fact, that first line simply begs for parody: “queer. yet not gay.” How about: “poetry. yet not good”?

We hope, dear reader, that a sample of Mr. Bernard’s oeuvre has inspired you to create your own example of miserable doggerel.

Don’t be a succubus that feeds on yourself alone; send us your poem today by clicking the “Contact Us” link at the top right-hand corner of your computer screen.

Posted at April 15, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack