Adesh Kaur: Screen Names

Adesh Kaur recently curated and co-edited, I’ll Have Wednesday (Bologna Press), a book of poems and prose. She has been published in The Juice BarI’ll Have Wednesday, and is the author of nine chapbooks (To See The Unseen Press). She recently wrote the lyrics for a new album,just cuz… with Baz.


This is an insignificant poem. I went on
a date, in a restaurant on the boulevard
not far from my apartment. The man
across the table made an effort to ask
the great questions of life while I chewed
my falafel. I wished my kids would call.
After years of love, I emptied out my pocket
into the garbage, did the laundry and got
divorced, four times. I drove home, put
on sweat pants, and turned on the TV.


He will walk sideways into my laugh
and remove his glasses to stare
at the poems in my shoes.
He will pay the check, leave a cash tip
and I shall follow him home.


A heart bomb grounded my father, the pilot.
Mother, determined to go back to work,
wore her nurse’s whites and took death
and dying by the hand. It was 1968
and my boyfriend and I would lie on top
of my comforter, feeling each other’s bodies
like new mothers count toes and suck
on baby fingers. My boyfriend unhooked
my bra, a white Maidenform
with three clasps in the back,
I was embarrassed with gratitude.
When mother came home, my boyfriend
and I acted normal and sat in the family room.
He watched “The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show “
and I read Plato. “A true pilot must of necessity
pay attention to the seasons, the heavens, the winds,
and everything proper to the craft if he is really
to rule a ship.” Mother made us grilled Velveeta
Cheese sandwiches and Campbell’s Tomato Soup,
the thrill of a newly opened bra in each bite
of the Saltine Crackers crumbled on top.
I memorized the forms of the heavens
and the immortality of the soul. Mother said,
“It’s time you learned to cook.”


O, indeed, reassuring me day out-started.
Day-o planned to the Nth, my quill, my pavement,
my daemon, and me.
Hummin’ glory days of I, I, I but alas and
crimeiny, ill winds thru the door. -Hi, mom.
Got any quinoa?
-Honey one, rest whilst I go to the Incan
nation. invent, cull, and dig. Kill virgins,
cross State Troupers,
and bring forth gold whilst the muse gets a divorce.
And I will serviette thou the perfect platter
of a different mom.
-Hey Missy, lookie here. Famous peoples
in the paper. -Fa and begone, you squidget you.
I am no thing
but a mom. -Hail to thee unhaled, Bam Bam.
Besides, it looks like your stripping
days are over.


-Dizzy, Bam Bam? -Aye, nothin’ workin’.
No vacuumin’, no dishwashin’, no shavin’ crotch….
I lie to stayish
down home on my floor to write.
Oyez, my house is a mess. I can’t breathe.
I am humanish.
-Virgo, get a grip. –‘Scuse me? I am no
wheres and it tastes like chicken.
Go tell my children
with their hungry groans that I am drinking
books and things are pretty tough for
a Miss Minnesota.
Soft! The smell of genius sounds
just like chocolate. I choose to buy
a vowel here.
o-o-o-o-o-o. -So, Missy, what does
that get ya now, eh?
-A purple cow.
We are proud to premiere these poems in Cultural Weekly.

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