She might be the babe beside me, but she's also one mighty terrific poet. I mean, Layne Ransom. Before the girlfriend was the best pal and the coworker and the classmate and the girl at the martini bar shouting about slugs. I'm here about her new (first! congrats! yes!) chapbook from H_NGM_N Books called You Are The Meat. Sure sure I could be risking an elbow (or worse!) saying anything sillybad about this book, but mainly I'd just be sillywrong. I'm being srsly(asmuchasispossible)honest here!
Here I go. Here I go. Boyfriend and poetry fan and Layne fan and superpal all chattering as one messy flung ball. First thing you gotta notice, first poem, first ending, first time you get to take a breath and scroll on: "Don’t reason/with a plane crash/clean up the fucking bodies." Layne is scared, but isn't scared to shout out of these poems, EVERYTHING SHE SEES. It's beautiful and daring and feels like late night walks we take. A little drunk and a little worried and a lot in awe of the Past, Present, and Future. "When will Jesus Christ fulfill my sexual desires?" That's life, right? Waiting for saviors, and getting stood up by saviors, and (failing at) being our own saviors, and realizing our saviors were here the whole fucking time, in a homemade hat holding a chocolate bar. "If I could slap a title on this moment/it’d be EVERYONE I LOVE IS HERE" This thing is full of good titles ("How Was Your Day?" and "Little Methods" to name TWO) and good lines (you get it yet?), but most WOW is the straight up stumbling-down-the-railroad-tracks oomph of these poems, this whole meatwad. It goes zoom: "then my eyes explode/out of my skull with blood and multi-colored/magnet letters spelling words like “faith,”/“love,” and “beauty.”/you rearrange them into phrases like/“you evil fatty” and “voila, beef hat!” But golly geesh golly, what reminders we get throughout, of being loved/possessed, "If I could take you where I’m going/I would take you," of the way it is (but keep going!), "If I ruled the world, everything/would turn out just as awful," of The Necessary Parts, "Your first something is holy. Have a sandwich. Keep moving constantly, firing and firing out."