Betsy Andrews, from New Jersey

Excerpt from New Jersey

mining the savage electional hour
the motorcade of monstrous mandate
ferries the hard-coin incumbent
from the site of the Battle of Paulus Hook
to the site of the Battle of Red Bank
logging the miles in a galling suit
promising middling fortunes
it’s a new entire, the castle rising,
fugue state come on at a hair-raising speed,
10,000 bad smells at once
photoluminescent paint striping
the electrified fence between points
on a map of screws, rotten eggs and hedges
the magic eye registering
a pack of starving nonce-words
chasing the dummy hare of salvation
to his next easy win
“In a large society
the election of a monarch
can never devolve to the wisest,”
Edward Gibbon, The Decline and
Fall of the Roman Empire
, 1776
insurgency as a form of employ
a red and white and blue tradition
minutemen in their underwear
storming Congressional Hall for back pay
while at the bottom of the second column to the right
New Jersey’s founding fathers–
the homosexual harpsichordist

Betsy Andrews’ new book, The Bottom, will appear this September.

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