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About this poet

Dorothy Barresi is the author of American Fanatics (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2010); Rouge Pulp (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2002); Post-Rapture Diner (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1996), winner of the American Book Award; and All of the Above (Beacon Press, 1991), winner of the Barnard College New Women Poets Prize. She is also the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the North Carolina Arts Council. She teaches at California State University at Northridge and lives in the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles.

Pocket Vampire

Dorothy Barresi

I reconcile myself to need.
To wanting stinging, aptest,
seigneurial, pugnacious,
handsome as always cracking wise in my
blood things, I think—by pulp
supply of roots or tearing teeth, and/or ardor
for what I vow against but carry
always like my secret self,
the bitten bride,
to rat-consecrated, moon-wharf glum's
glee in gotten-up peignoir
dripping not daisies but rotten, long-aborning
lickable black roses, the smaller
the better to hide my privacy in: it's
pretty good getting, that bite I flirt
but never stick my neck out for.
Yes, Your Woundship.
Would a quibble count? Just one lick?
Damn me. Then,
back into the bidden, unblessed
dark with you, my tiny prince
of dirty comity.
Sin simulacrum.

From American Fanatics, published by University of Pittsburgh Press. Copyright © 2011 by Dorothy Baressi. Used by permission of the publisher.

From American Fanatics, published by University of Pittsburgh Press. Copyright © 2011 by Dorothy Baressi. Used by permission of the publisher.

Dorothy Barresi

Dorothy Barresi is the author of American Fanatics (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2010), Rouge Pulp (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2002), Post-Rapture Diner (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1996), and All of the Above (Beacon Press, 1991).