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Three from mary wants to be a superwoman


your sweetie pie your precious one*  

for sommer browning


this is a gospel for who knows

it’s like we’re supposed to peter pan ourselves every day

sleep just doesn’t come that easy

we will always have bad dreams

our griefs and karmic baggage

the kind of petulance I think we all suffer from

this is supposed to be a glittering world

but shit, i sent you the magic free version

i hope that we can recover

from all of the stupid things


i love how you are in a vestibule

everything that happens right now happens

from cali and that feels so weird to me

i feel like i kinda want it to be a secret

like bitcoin for your heart

i mean when you go back home and you feel like a different person there

this was never your calling

a heavy mist permeates from the humid dance floor

a lariat around your wits

You know Bootsy played here like two weeks ago

and I didn't go.

If I told this to my 20 year old self

she would think I was a sad sad adult person

well, i’m gonna channel Diana Vreeland and put on my turban

read this in the moonlight

and see what happens


Tender glitter aching

               an admittance of your fragility

our hearts are pounding

we lost patience with the lord

can’t you just see that maybe

just maybe you were the ocean

fuck art, let’s dance


* “i’m wondering”







warm like you* 

for alicia coombes


i am addicted and i keep thinking

that’s what i’ll wear to the party

move to that dance

[say] time is a little container

not a healer

i want to finish what’s her face’s book

and just be done with it

i have this intense need to be liked

to see the new ink

and anything else you think might help

right now "I don't believe in real life"

Memory is not real life

It’s just a fact of feeling lost

something fierce


my friends are really saving me right now

hummingbirds with a little aubrey beardsley

you don’t need

all the things you buy

i’d love to cross over, pretty mama

but the water’s way too high

i didn’t pay you to come out here

i didn’t pay you for no boat rides

dancing in the shallows of the river

we hold on

to the life we aspire to

trying not to grow old

hear my train a comin’

well that’s just how we roll

with the lights on

and some adult beverages

excited to hang out

to have luxury problems

we are crossing the bridge into sf now

meet there or close

the way here or here’s hoping

god loves you when you’re beautiful

and you are too beautiful to be a poet


i don’t really want to sit in my house alone

with all this awesome booty

drinking a bottle of rose´

slapping my tattoo to stop the itch

i wouldn’t mind a little fucking

reading the art of the personal essay

being held accountable for my own actions

but somehow everything you do

will be used against you

you’ve got too much visible shit

to keep your friends close

and your enemies closer

I am so glad

someone so beautiful

exists at all


* “for once in my life”







pretty little one*

for adam wülfmeyer


i always wanted to be a rock star

some kind of psychedelic neo-hippie vixen

my fake name on my real self

we all need that great love

to feel the burn of the sun on my skin

literally glittering

when the water in my body

wants to rise up

feel it coming near
and i don’t know why

feel it in my blood

like the night of my birth

like the twenty-eighth year


i’ll give it to you honest

family secrets are the worst

so many things i've found out

over this last year

about people and history and our expectations

of people and history

i'm very unsettled about what i know

and what i don't know

like stars circle and then burn out

, what you for real look like

oh, the blood is speaking

i just want to warm my blood

i have this good sick body to share

i said come on jimi just lead me

i got shit to do


I was a little late to the party on this one

we speak about apology about the world in which we live

the thing you want the most inside you

               this happiness chance

but i can’t control all the ways that i’m falling

my own salty desires


                                           piecing (weaving)

                                                                             a life back together,

a tangible formalism

like architecture is a vow

like never before

                 i wish this was my problem

where the river water meets the ocean water

Because we're all in debt &

we’re all in love

something inside flickers

a strip light

on that old train song

take care of me lord

until i get home


* “my cherie amour”




erica lewis

erica lewis was born in Cincinnati, Ohio. Her books include the precipice of jupiter (2009, with artist Mark Stephen Finein), camera obscura (2010, with artist Mark Stephen Finein), murmur in the inventory (2013); and the first two books of the box set trilogy: daryl hall is my boyfriend (2015) and mary wants to be a superwoman (2017). Her chapbooks have been published by Belladonna, Lame House Press, and After Hours/The Song Cave.


The Brooklyn Rail

FEB 2015

All Issues