URSULA ROBINSON-SHAW

Sonnet for the good meat

g says the only way to write a love
poem is to make sure you’ve never
read a sonnet before in your
life there is something nice about it tho
exclaiming “MY WIFE!” mentally adding
“COMRADE OF MY IDEALS, COMPANION OF MY BATTLES, DADDY
OF MY CHILDREN FOR FUTURE BATTLES”
in the worst words of your favourite economist
“LOVE IS JENNY, JENNY IS LOVE’s NAME”
so i call you jenny
to be polite…...

jenny jenny jenny
jenny we are fucked from the perspective of eternity
jenny it’s scary but that’s the price of freedom
lolling around in the interminable present
jenny if the most effective political message
takes place in the forum of jokes
maybe the hideous confections
of the heart do too

jenny according to my own bad pleasure
lie on my floor
jenny until i say so
jenny your beauty like a stolen watch
jenny you will read for me the news
jenny you will pay for the wine and dine
jenny you will read for me the new manifestos
jenny you will shelter me from cold
jenny your father is very rich
jenny if for a moment i stop saying jenny will the entire
spectacular dissolve jenny –
what big teeth your ex girlfriend has
jenny why did you two get dinner –

jenny you bunny from the blue
jenny don’t make me a boiler
jenny why don’t you praise me
jenny. why do you spurn the grimy
tactility of my floor covered in clothes jenny
we cannot let the fascist dictates
of storage solutions win – jenny – JENNY –

JENNY. on this truncated timeline
JENNY. ON THIS PROFLIGATE EARTH
jenny. you FASTIDIOUS BITCH
YOU total BASTARD JENNY in the BEST WORDS
of your LEAST FAVOURITE PHILOSOPHER “I AM READY
TO SELL MY MOTHER INTO SLAVERY JUST TO FUCK YOU FOR EVER”
JENNY!!

Image of Ursula Robinson-ShawUrsula Robinson-Shaw is a writer from Aotearoa, living in Melbourne. Her work has appeared in Overland, Cordite Poetry Review, Peach Mag, The Spinoff, Tell Me Like You Mean It, and elsewhere. Her chapbook Noonday was published by Puncher & Wattmann in 2019.

Robinson-Shaw comments: This poem steals and perverts a few lines – from Clara Zetkin’s 1896 address to the German Social Democratic Party Congress, Only in Conjunction With the Proletarian Woman Will Socialism Be Victorious,”  Karl Marx’s 1836 album of poems dedicated to his wife, Jenny von Westphalen, and a 2012 Guardian interview with Slavoj Žižek. Sorry to Clara Zetkin.

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Puncher & Wattmann: ‘NOONDAY’

Photographer credit: Charlotte Thomson