cutting girls out of catalogs, holding child-sized scissor blades deep inside
scissoring images of women, categorizing them into portals
making flashcards out of some of them, gluing them onto squares
a hole series comprised of busty ladies, in the back
subject subconscious mind to skimpy assets
make fun of little girls’ transformers
rap their knuckles, slap their heads, retail their brains into bikini zone palettes
slash me into desirable womanly creature over under
conjure up my broken doll legs, sink me inside my odd doll factory
mounted on a strange colored vase – I am a poisonous beautyskull lollipop
infused with a strangely disproportionate spectrum of different pink & purple hues
My expectations are not the same as they used to be; they have abated.
I know that my mind is not perfectly fine for/with everyone.
I don’t know what to expect of people.
I often try things, not knowing what might happen next. I don’t dive in fully, yet I dive so deep.
Sometimes I suddenly sink, sometimes I suddenly rise, sometimes I alternate between the two – feeling confused, uncertain about what is going on and what might happen next – feeling unsure what SHOULD happen next.
I don’t have solid expectations.
I have floating expectations.
My water color/texture/pressures change.
Sometimes I feel disappointed, but still unsure.
Sometimes I feel delighted, but still unsure.
Almost always unsure about most things, but one thing I feel sure about.
Everything seems prone to solubility.
don’t kiss me if you don’t like it dark, you said
& I sunk in
& I sunk down
black rose petals turned
into black holes, fell out
& I wilted
& I sunk under
black water lost its wings, you thought
all my dark soft spots had drowned
but I hid black rose petals underneath
my throat, swallowed them deep
until they lived in the skull box of my brain
don’t kiss me if you don’t like it dark, I said
don’t pretend you can carry me
if you can’t handle mouthfuls of dark roses
do you wish I would have drowned when I sunk down?
if you had cared enough to stay close, you would have known
my black roses were dark purple blooming forever
swimming so much higher than you & me
Everyone has their own definitions of love, which can make the word challenging to grasp and believe in - especially after you've lost something you thought was real love. For me, in terms of romantic love, it's a word I don't usually like to hear unless the person saying it really feels strongly about me AND expects to feel that strongly (or even stronger) for a very long time. Much as part of me might crave the word, I don't crave easy little blurbs, blurts, or fucked up fakery. I only want it if the person feels truly intense about me as an individual; if the person adores the way I am (my good parts and my extreme imperfections) and will not quickly/easily get tired of me, give up, or suddenly back away.
“I’ve been paralyzed…”
Part of my brain died. I burned
into an anorexic serpent girl.
An expanse of serpentine turpentine
clotted my heart and bled.
Every finger you used to touch
is now a bloody sea.
You only wanted money & drugs,
“…this lack of feeling”
not the grave love me.
Part of my arms died. I turned
into an out of water angelfish.
A flesh eaten mess of broken holes.
A dark mass falling, falling, falling.
Misguided pen knives flanking
my last cacophony of red seeds.
Pine needles ooze
out of my ears, turn into blue
speckled beads. Sparkling
then clotting then cloddy.
I’m an unloved stupid block.
If your love equals death
& I lived, what does that mean?
Am I nobody’s
but my own?
“With a hatchet hanging over my head…”
Throwing out all that blood.
Like a skeleton key flung into
a stream of misplaced fluids.
A conduit of duct shaped peep
show. Boo hiss and stoned love
letters filled with dirty cocaine.
It’s too damned late, but
“I need some healing”
from these heart soaked veins.
“Hissing under the floor board.”
Like baroque harpsichords plucked out
of tune and growing volatile.
I need some heavy black fangs.
I need some sharp poison teeth.
I need a blue stained butcher knife.
Just try to kiss me one more time.
NOTES: (All of these pieces were partially inspired by Juliet’s own recent experiences, including a serious health issue, divorce, and unsure if she believes in love anymore.
‘FEMALE INFESTATION’ was culled from one of Juliet’s old blog posts about girlhood thoughts and child play.
The 1., 2., and 3. pieces fuse Juliet’s own experiences with repeatedly listening to Nick Cave songs, especially “Fifteen Feet of Pure White Snow” (Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds), “Henry Lee” (Nick Cave & PJ Harvey), and “Jack the Ripper” (Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds). 1’s title and other line with quotation marks are from “Fifteen Feet of Pure White Snow”. 3’s title and third line in quotation marks are from “Jack the Ripper”; its second line in quotation marks is from “Fifteen Feet of Pure White Snow.”
Juliet Cook’s poetry has appeared within Action Yes, Barn Owl Review, Columbia Poetry Review, Diagram, Diode, Menacing Hedge and many more print and online entities. She is the editor/publisher of Blood Pudding Press (print) and Thirteen Myna Birds (online). Juliet’s first full-length poetry book, ‘Horrific Confection’ was published by BlazeVOX. She also has oodles of published poetry chapbooks, most recently including FONDANT PIG ANGST (Slash Pine Press), Tongue Like a Stinger (Wheelhouse), POST-STROKE (Blood Pudding Press for Dusie Kollektiv 5), and Thirteen Designer Vaginas (very recently published by the new Hyacinth Girl Press). She is currently submitting her second full-length poetry collection, “Deadly Doll Head Dissection”. To find out more, visit .