|We Protect the Weak
We protect the weak and call it love or ethics.
For the safety of our students this door
must remain closed at all times. Ani yalda tova. I am a good girl,
I tell the Israeli jeweler who is impressed with my Hebrew.
Someone nearby says, Fuck Israel. I offer, I am a bad girl. Ani yalda ra.
To dance is a kind of paralysis. Muscles contract
in a certain way and we call it beautiful.
The men on the beach made me think
they were dancing tango, but instead one
was helping the other will his feet to remember
walking. If I had withered hands and always gave you
your pen with my teeth would you think it beautiful?
For the continued safety of our money
these checkpoints must remain closed
at all times. For the quality of our progeny these legs
must remain closed at all times. These minds.
This mouth. This heart. Why don’t you substitute
your for these and this? See how it feels. Ani yalda ra.
Feel that. Feel me feel you. Tell me I’m good
and bad. Tova and Ra. Let us be both…
© Kimberly Campanello
Kimberly will be reading at the National Concert Hall, on Thursday, December 6th 2012. Kimberly will be read her poems on the sheela-na-gigs in Strange Country, a new work by composer Benjamin Dwyer for uilleann pipes, tape, and poetry. More information and booking details can be found at www.nch.ie.
We Protect the Weak was previously published in the pamphlet, Spinning Cities (Wurm Press, 2011). Kimberly read this poem at Catechism, Readings for Pussy Riot, in Dublin.
Kimberly Campanello was born in Elkhart, Indiana. She now lives in Dublin and London. She was the featured poet in the Summer 2010 issue of The Stinging Fly, and her pamphlet Spinning Cities was published by Wurm Press in 2011 . Her poems have appeared in magazines in the US, UK, and Ireland, including nthposition , Burning Bush II, Abridged , and The Irish Left Review .
Pic by Brian Kavanagh
Pussy-Riot Forever : The Body
I riot, You riot, We riot.
The body riots.
Gall bladder riot
Riot in Queues
Vocal cords riot
Yin Yang riot
Dictators Never : Roll-Call
Aferworki Isaias riot
Ben Ali riot
Bashar al Assad riot
Duvalier Jean-Claude (Baby Doc!) riot
Ershad Mohammed Hossain riot
Franciso franco riot
Ghadaffi Muamar riot
Ghasmi Ahmad riot
Hugo Chavez riot
Hitler Adolf riot
Hussein Saddam riot
Idid Amin riot
Jean Bidel Bohassa riot
Kim Jong II riot
Lukashenko Alexander riot
Mugabe Robert riot
Moi Daniel Torotich Arap riot
Noriega Manuel riot
Ortega Daniel riot
Pol Pot riot
Putin Putin Putin Putin Putin Pussy Riot !
© Philo Ikonya and Helmuth A. Niederle.
Thanks to Philo Ikonya and Helmuth A. Niederle for permission to reproduce their two poems from Catechism for Pussy Riot. The book is available for a small donation via the English PEN website, here.
I read it Wednesday 21/11/2012 at the Grand Social as part of this event, and which I have linked in this blog, here. I read a new poem of mine called, Precarious Migratory Spectacular.
Philo Ikonya is a writing colleague of mine from PEN International and the PEN International Women Writer’s Committee. I am linking here to her website and blog.