Nineteen Ways of Considering Female Rape Fantasies

for Karla Francis Smith, 1976-2003, and Jami Liz Macarty

Wanting what she cannot want, what
Society doesn’t allow,
And doesn’t allow her to want,
And understanding her greatest fear
Is a kind of prison, and wanting
To free herself from this mental prison
That’s her greatest fear,
Because she knows what hasn’t happened but could
Is worse than what already has,
Almost always,
And once it’s over she’ll still
Be there,
And wanting equality with men, the same men
Who for centuries couldn’t be raped,
(i.e. A man
In a western country
Before 2012,
When the FBI re-defined rape,
And the legal ramifications and attendant protections
Were extended to men)…
A woman who fantasizes her own rape
Wants her deepest fears realized,
Wants trauma,
And thus
Has already been raped…
How many times? Three? Four?
How many times must a woman want to be raped—
How long!
And how purely!—
Without equivocation or hedging,
Before she is really and truly raped,
Already and always,
And forever, for all to see?
This woman who wants to be raped
Is raped. All day. Every day.
How long must she want to be raped
Before she is no longer raped?
The sign above the gate
Read in ornate wrought-iron letters, “Rape
Will set you free.”
She isn’t afraid of rape,
Rather has made a friend of her own rape,
Her ultimate nightmare.
A kind of victory.
Because if her own rape isn’t a woman’s closest friend
It is a thing to be feared.
Truly feared.
This woman wants to live without fear,
With nothing to lose.
She isn’t a victim,
Has never been a victim,
Is exercising her own agency
Say the fourth-wave feminists—
Wants to transcend
The value imposed on her cunt
By the patriarchy.
This woman who wants to be raped,
Like an object of endless aesthetic fascination,
Depends upon
Your point of view.
She makes the fat and slovenly post-structuralist feminists
And their beta-male and white knight attendants
Surround her,
Sprawl around,
Rise up to her, no longer surly, wild,
But pale and mild.
The subject of endless debate and navel-gazing,
She has made of her desire
For independence and self-reliance
A public declaration, a manifesto,
Is a pioneer
Carving a path through the wilderness
Of herself,
Advancing a frontier.

The Middle-Aged, Over-Ripe Woman, Who Used to Be Seriously Hot, and a Seriously Hot Mess, a Real Firecracker, as They Say, Settles in to Write a Poem

Half a bottle of chilled Muscatel, drunk, check.
Sultry, half-lidded eyes ringed with smokey eye-shadow, check.
Slimming cellphone camera angle canted from above, check.
Slight pout just shy of duck-lips, check.
Come hither gaze, check.
Cleavage of enormous, pendulous breasts, formerly classified as the fabled “torpedo”-type, at the
            dawn of their 5th decade of existence, having nourished and weaned her only child 20
            years ago, a bi-racial, caramel-skinned, frizzy-haired, long-legged mid-western Amazon,
            breasts now tanned and age-spotted and creased with capillary-like wrinkles and stretch
            marks, a sun-kissed, freckled arrowhead of skin in the deep V of her wrap-around crop
            top, projecting out, perpendicular to torso, like an apron of a stage into a dim audience,
            buoyed to gravity-defying effect thanks to NASA-grade mechanical engineering of a bra
            made from high-tech applied-science weave cloth, a technological feat extending the
            legacy of the zeppelin-esque, cumulus cloud formations that first threatened to violate the
            personal space of any male with a developed and properly functioning endocrine system
            in her vicinity when she was 13, breasts that totally queered the pitch for females with
            even premium breast development, and the bad luck to encounter a male who had been
            around her up to 3 days prior, putting aforementioned hypothetical-but-not-really female
            to shame, by comparison…thus making a mockery of the most indifferent application of
            the Pareto principle, the so-called “80-20” rule, although in her case it had seemed more
            like a 99.999-.0001 rule since the age of menarchy, check.
Glimpse of smooth and featureless abdomen conspicuously lacking tell-tale scars from stapling
            or liposuction, despite being the stomach of a fifty-year-old woman with obviously high
            levels of estrogen and a drinker and smoker, check.
Visible around and behind her, polished wood floor and stark white banister leading upstairs
            directly over her shoulder and then turning left to ascend bluffly past a narrow window
            just over her buoyant, platinum blonde hair, stairs perhaps leading to a kind of tower or
            turret where she can look out over the subdivision and birdwatch from a garret-space, an
            addition her boyfriend built on the house they share, so she has a place to write, check. Bi-racial teenage daughter having just driven off to 3rd semester of college in a new $35,000.00
            electric car aforementioned boyfriend bought and gave to her, the boyfriend who’s also
            not the baby-daddy, the latter having long since departed the scene, either incarcerated or
            formerly or informally having given up all parental rights, check.
6-month-old RV parked in driveway of house, which is some distance away from her present
            location, check.
And her, just returned from a trip to Sturgis, with boyfriend, in their RV, which boyfriend she
            now refers to on social media as “her cowboy,” check.
This same snapshot posted to social media account, and liked 37 times by men she’s never met,
            but who steadfastly don’t objectify her, don’t make her feel self-conscious, eating their
            hearts out via emoticons and little hearts, check.

Post-Pimp Restaurant, a Love Story

He wasn’t good and he wasn’t fast, expediting, peering through
Brushed stainless steel jungle gym
Cook line, a gridiron facemask for linebacker-outlaw King Kong,
Or a shark cage stretching away to infinity.
When you reached in under the heat lamps to garnish the oval plates
And glass platters shaped like grouper,
The hairs on your forearms curled and crinkled into nothing
All the way down to the glands, pinholes emitting little wisps of smoke
Like snuffed-out candles or matches.
After the rush came in and ordered, and the orders
Started coming off the grill,
You just knew this guy who was expediting
Outside the cook line wasn’t up to the job, driving multiple
Generations of female servers—
The fat, middle-aged women with gunt-bulges
In turnip-shaped skinny jeans,
And who had sagging faces the owners tried to keep in place
By using progressively more garish make-up,
Like biker molls wore 60 years ago,
And the women in their late 20s and 30s who had gotten fatter younger
And who applied more garish contouring
Than did their older counterparts, and then the young divas
Who all had faces like melted candles,
Planes of white and brown dovetailing to some kind of khaki,
And contouring you couldn’t tell from
The Asian slant-eye stretch from their too-tight ponytails
That in a funny, maybe unintentionally ironic way, complimented their coltish walk
In unforgiving skinny jeans and platform shoes,
And the pretty boys with faces
Smooth and pale and devoid of character as hard-boiled eggs—
You just knew this deaf ginger didn’t have it in him to drive these women and boys
No better than women the way an expediter in the kitchen had to,
Like a pimp who’s working Super Bowl weekend in the city hosting the Super Bowl.
The first time my adopted friend Dave worked with the guy
Dave said he wasn’t very good but he sure was slow, and he was right. So of course
Management kept him outside the cage,
Letting the orders pile up, plates stacking up on top of each other,
Garnish of parsley and julienne squash
As brittle as autumn leaves, like shake and dried sardines,
Entrees getting cooked from below and above,
Pressed between plates, seared by ceramic and glass as hot as a kiln.
The only servers who got their orders on time
And cooked to order,
And whose customers were happy and tipped well,
And who therefore didn’t nag the cooks or go to management and complain
Not about the expediter
But the cooks,
Were servers who were dating a cook.
These girls always got their food on time and cooked to order.
Hooking up with a server at work could be tough.
The older waitresses were bitter and resentful if a server got her food correct
Because she was taking care of a cook after work,
And the younger ones were jealous.
So the older servers, and the younger, homely servers—
Let’s call them 4s—would cock-block any cook who was trying to get with a server.
Most nights one cook would be designated to talk to the 4s
And below, so they wouldn’t get jealous of the cooks trying to score with the 7s or above.
We called that cook “skank relief.”