Rigorous
Volume One, Issue 4



Nikki Wallschlaeger


Crash Blue Sunday

I don’t want to clean but my mind is sick
Best thing to do is pick up a broom & forget about it
But I don’t want to do what’s good for me
I only wanna to do what’s good for you
The woman in the mirror is cutting a curse for you

I don’t want to change diapers but my heart is sick
Best thing to do is change my own & forget about it
But I don’t want to do a damn thing that’s good for me
I only wanna to do what’s good for you
The woman in the mirror is mending a curse for you

I don’t want to cook no food but my belly is sick
Best thing to do is throw up the poison & forget about it
But I don’t want to struggle with feeling well today
I only wanna to do what’s good for you
I’m the woman in the mirror writing a curse on you

I don’t want to try today honey
I don’t want to feel good
I don’t want to forget today baby
I’m not in a forgiving mood
For the people of this world tryin
to pull me down to tell me
Its alright
It’s gonna be alright




Crash Blue Sunday (take 2)

After Buddy Guy

Damn right I got the blues
I’m so mad I could chew concrete and glass
From behind my eyes down to my calves
No one cares about nothin unless it carries them
What the hell are you asking me for
The steel rain coming down on another day
This country and I—been through this before
And I feel no hope in the games they play
Watching all this foolishness streaming by

Damn right I got the blues
I’m so fed up I could shoot a room full of men
From the back of my dreams down to my laugh
No one cares about nothin unless it carries them
What the hell are you asking me again
The inferno rain coming down on another day
This country and I—we go back all the way back
And I feel no contentment in the efforts I make
Watching all this foolishness streaming by




Catfish

After Jimi Hendrix

My arms are grown woman scales
we’re swimming for another tide
I got the range of the ancients
we move the mountains around
in the sea and rearrange the new

I’m a saucy little fish with a big mouth
when small fry grow up watch out
hardheaded women capsize ships
queuing up waves smacking our lips

The deep blue sea is gonna have to
be big enough for you and me
over here now all you waterbabies
taking over the swells of groundwater
cracking castles with your nightswims

Over half the earth is our homeland
we have work to do and I’m thirsty
I got the range of the undersea
we move the cities around
on land and rearrange the old


Nikki Wallschlaeger: "My work recently has been featured in jubilat, Apogee, Georgia Review, American Poetry Review, Witness, PoetryNow podcast through the Poetry Foundation and others. I am the author of the full-length collections Houses (Horseless Press 2015) and Crawlspace (Bloof 2017) as well as the graphic chapbook I Hate Telling You How I Really Feel from Bloof Books (2016). I live in Wisconsin."




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