Evan J. Peterson
Otto; or Up with Dead People
—Directed by Bruce LaBruce, 2008
A hasty transfusion: tube ripped from arm
and spurting: hot jets:
Starring Flesh as “Too Precious A Thing in These Times”
Your meatkiss collapses, a nethermouth,
a body waiting to be signed.
Facial wasting: lipidystrophy [no fats]: slipping
the elastic, eyes sucked back and teeth
plucked of hemoglobin, but please!
Leave your torso intact. Fresh and chiseled,
a newly struck tombstone.
Infrared doesn’t lie; aren’t we all hot
for the right Predator?
Fingered meats on pile
in the abattoir.
Who’s king of the heap?
[I mean, come on—you fucked worse
than zombies, yeah?]
No pic, no chat/no fats/no femmes/no Blacks/Asians/no
Skin your head, snout to glass.
Lose the jackboots, unstrap suspenders,
bring your teenage angst,
Starring the Zombie as “Unextraordinary”
mere jerk of nerves, no different than life
your capacity for reason untainted
by embalmer’s fluids[hot jets]
Still, the undead have difficulty accepting suicide.
The Revolution is your boyfriend. The Apocalypse:
he’s just a fuckbuddy.
When there’s no one around
Except for the Policeman in our heads
Raise the dead like a greased fist. Power to the people.
Yeah there’s no one around
Let’s pretend that everyone’s dead:
Evan J. Peterson is the author of Skin Job (Minor Arcana Press, 2012) and The Midnight Channel (Babel/Salvage Press, 2013). With Vincent Kovar, he edited Gay City 5: Ghosts in Gaslight, Monsters in Steam (CreateSpace, 2013), a finalist for the 2014 Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Anthology. His fiction, nonfiction, and poetry have appeared in journals including Weird Tales, The Stranger, and Nightmare, as well as in the anthologies The Queer South: LQBTQ Writers on the American South (Sibling Rivalry, 2014), edited by Douglas Ray; Drawn to Marvel: Poems from the Comic Books (Minor Arcana Press, 2014), edited by Bryan D. Dietrich and Marta Ferguson; Arcana: The Tarot Poetry Anthology (Minor Arcana Press, 2015), edited by by Marjorie Jensen; and Aim for the Head: An Anthology of Zombie Poetry (Write Bloody Publishing, 2011), edited by Rob Sturma. His first full-length prose book, a safe sex memoir tentatively titled The PrEP Diaries, will be published by Lethe Press in 2017. Brought to life in Miami, Florida, Evan now lives and writes in Seattle. Check out evanjpeterson.com for more.
This poem appears in The Midnight Channel and contains lyrics from the song “Everyone’s Dead” by The Homophones, featured prominently in the Bruce LaBruce’s film, Otto; or Up with Dead People.