“I Want To Be Shocked Shitless,” Gloria Anzaldúa

I’m afraid, I told them,
that you will open no gates for me,
that neither one of you will floor me.

I fear that the hooks
in your words will not grip me
that I will vanish
into that inner terrain
where none follow.

I fear you will bore me.
I know you will call me
on the awkward line,
the hollow word.
But the truths I don’t uncover,
the visions I don’t aim toward,
don’t reach, will you–

I don’t want to be told
what to write
I can excavate my own content
I want to be pushed into
digging deep wells
in unheard ofland.
I want you to give me eyes in
in the back of my head.
Be a thunder clap
and rouse me.
Be an earthquake
make me tremble
Be a river raging rampant
in my veins.
Shock me shitless.

“Poetry Punishes You For Your Absence,” Julianna Baggot

She’s not an easy lover who simply
tilts her head when you appear on the front stoop.

You hope the porch light will cast heavenly redemption
like a church-basement Christmas pageant.

No, there’s scowling, silence. And when finally
she takes you to the tub to wash away the world’s filth,

you’re always shocked, no matter how many times
you’ve strayed, that she doesn’t gently cup your head,

but dunks it, again and again,
a baptism that just won’t take.