Monday, September 19, 2011

Ellen Herget To Be Featured Reader on Monday, September 26, at Duff's

Ellen Herget will be one of three featured readers on Monday, September 26, at Duff's, 392 North Euclid, in the Central West End.

Other featured readers will be Katerina Canyon and Matt Paul.

Doors open at 7:30 p.m.; admission is $3.

Advance sign-up for the open-mic following the featured readers is encouraged. Click here to sign-up via e-mail.

Musical guest will be Drew Moravec.

Ellen Herget graduated from UMSL with a Bachelor's in Anthropology in 2008. Since then, she has put her degree to good use through nannying and local endeavors. She plays in a two piece folk duo called the Skekses, and is a founding editor (with Erin Wiles) of Bad Shoe, St. Louis's regional lit mag for women.

Errant Curls

I don’t care if you care that I smoke.
If my voice wiggles through your ears and agitates the inside of your skull.
If my tit-to-waist ratio seems profane.
If my eyes graze over yours and you see what I’m thinking.
Maybe I’ll slip my arm into the crook of your elbow; I do that, sometimes.
I may even touch your hair.
Maybe I’ll buy you a beer if you look thirsty enough,
and I got an extra four bucks in my wallet,
oh my darling oh my love I am such a wild card that way.

My sternum is a studio apartment where a Buddha and an ego fight over the only bed.
My sternum is a wee factory where the production specialty is consistently recycling self-motivation; raw materials run rare in that department.
My sternum is a cracked leaking engine though I’m pretty sure the duct-tape will hold and we are bound to get new parts in sometime.

But back to touching your hair, dear;
I know that can be an issue.
It is callous for me to penetrate the barrier where your skin
meets peripheral air and warms it.
I am untethered, I know, noisy smoke-scented wind that is here and gone again;
this makes me strange. I cannot be quartered.
I cannot be convinced. I can hardly be reckoned with.

Would you believe me if I told you that I am harmless, that I am soft?
That I am capable of silence, when the air is dark and warm?
Would you believe me if I told you that once, I bore manacles--pinned my arms to my curvy sides, denied my fingers the right to wander and ply and stroke errant curls?
(And the days were an endless chain of empty meals and blue-screened emotion; the days were a flurry of tiny finch-like thoughts that twittered and sputtered and smacked windows and died; the days were a myriad of protein and mileage reimbursement.)
Oh yes dear heart, I wore manacles. And I hammered the pins out myself.

I’m tired now; I do that, sometimes.
Spout and spout and spout til I run dry.
I will go home soon, my orange-and-burgundy cavern,
and pump for another few quarts of diesel.
I will do this alone, of course; I can’t imagine you with me.
I’ll take my leave when the clock turns westward. Til then,

You look thirsty, honey.
And your hair has fallen in your eyes again.

-- Ellen Herget

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