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About this poet

Elizabeth Knapp is the author of Requiem with an Amulet in Its Beak (Washington Writers' Publishing House, 2019) and The Spite House (C&R Press, 2011), winner of the 2010 De Novo Poetry Prize. The recipient of the Robert H. Winner Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, the Literal Latté Poetry Award, the Discovered Voices Award from Iron Horse Literary Review, and a Maryland State Arts Council Fellowship, she is currently an associate professor of English at Hood College in Frederick, Maryland, where she lives.

My Brain Is Mad for Baudrillard

Today, I read of scientists’ warnings
about the potential dangers of sex
robots and thought of you. Some blame
the rise of right-wing populism
on postmodern windbags like you, holed
up in your university office, giving head
to your shadow. But Jean, you were right—
we are living in the desert of the real,
where signs metastasize like cancer cells,
and who hasn’t felt the Foucauldian
grip around her wrists, her ankles?
Even desire a simulacrum of itself.
I drowned in you as if in a frozen lake,
but either I or the lake was dreaming.

Copyright © 2018 by Elizabeth Knapp. Used with the permission of the author. This poem originally appeared in Quarterly West Issue 93.

Copyright © 2018 by Elizabeth Knapp. Used with the permission of the author. This poem originally appeared in Quarterly West Issue 93.

Elizabeth Knapp

Elizabeth Knapp

Elizabeth Knapp is the author of Requiem with an Amulet in Its Beak (Washington Writers' Publishing House, 2019) and The Spite House (C&R Press, 2011), winner of the 2010 De Novo Poetry Prize. The recipient of the Robert H. Winner Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, the Literal Latté Poetry Award, the Discovered Voices Award from Iron Horse Literary Review, and a Maryland State Arts Council Fellowship, she is currently an associate professor of English at Hood College in Frederick, Maryland, where she lives.

by this poet

poem

At night, I leave all the lights on in my head.
This way, I know the dead can find me.        

Sometimes they toss me their worldly trinkets:
the moon, wobbly as a child’s loose tooth,
a tuning fork, a spear of lightning for my song.

Like a magpie, I collect them.
I line my own death

2
poem

And why not Sherman herself, you ask?
Because in this instance, the inclusion
of social media denotes a postmodern
approach to self-portraiture, a Baudrillardian
hall of mirrors in which the self is projected
against a million anonymous eyes, all hungry
for a taste of her. How will she

2
poem
Little poem, you are too young to remember
the smoking gun, the con man on TV
who looked like a supervillain, or the hominid
skeleton dug up in Africa and given the name
of your childhood dog. You never heard a word
about the IRA bombings, nor did The Texas Chainsaw
Massacre terrorize your sleep. Having