Manifesto of the Lyric Selfie

Becca Klaver
Our “I”s.
They are multiple.
We shuffle them
often as we like.
They can tag us.
We can untag ourselves.
We’ve got our
to-be-looked-at-ness
oh we have
got it.
We peer and cross.
Go lazy.
We’re all girly.
We’re pretty selfie.
We write our poems.
We write our manifestos.
While sitting in the photo booth.
While skipping down the street.
We think: if only my camera
could see me now.
There is a tranquil lyric
but we recollect emotion
with the speed of the feed.
We pose to show
the spontaneous overflow
of powerful feelings.
There are no more countrysides.
There are no more churchyards.
We smudge our vistas.
We flip the cam around.
What is burning in our little hearts?
Hashtags of interiority
licking like flames.
We had been reflective.
We have been reflected.

More by Becca Klaver

Fall Parties

I cannot wait for fall parties.
The invitations have begun to roll in.

I used to think I loved summer parties
until they got this year so sweaty and sad,

the whole world away at the shore,
sunk in sweet and salt.

Goodbye, summer: 
you were supposed to save us

from spring but everyone just slumped
into you, sad sacks 

pulling the shade down on an afternoon 
of a few too many rounds. 

Well, I won’t have another.
I’ll have fall. The fall of parties

for no reason, of shivering rooftops,
scuffed boots, scarves with cigarette holes.

I’ll warm your house.
I’ll snort your mulling spices.

I’ll stay too late, I’ll go on a beer run,
I’ll do anything 

to stay in your dimly lit rooms 
scrubbed clean of all their pity.

Related Poems

Selfie with Pomona: The Goddess of Abundance

Pulitzer Fountain, New York City
 
 
She has all the advantage. Two sculptors
for her single body. Bronze prepossession. Bare arms
muscled as if she plucked each apple in her basket, 
then scythed the reeds to weave the basket—heaping on peaches
and pearls of snow. What seasons? 
What death? She’s seamless as light. She doesn’t even need 
the fountain she’s standing on—its layercaked Christmas trees 
or summer spritzing. She’s a one-woman waterfall
of whatever. Could toss the basket on my head—see
how she leans—then fill another. She could mint money
out of bird shit. Go everywhere in mink coats
and the minks still living. What climate change? What protests? 
She doesn’t even need breath in her body. She’s her own
Roman empire. The champagne porch of the Plaza 
glassed-in now behind her. Bellinis for all
who can afford them. She’s her own 1%
chance of radiance. The drizzle we try to catch
like that girl I watched turn all of Trinity Cathedral into self
with stained glass. Self with organ, self with hymnal, with column
like she was a caryatid lost from her ceiling. I wanted to ask her:
isn’t anything sacred? Why not find a belltower and think of God 
and deformity. But how is that different? Self 
with ancient story. Space shaped like what we’re not 
can conquer all desire. Self on a memory card can conquer 
all questions. What price these smiles? These abundant 
deletions? Where’s the best light to look human?