The
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An experimental arts journal and monthly review, harvested from the fields of isolation. 
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Featured Artists:







Debunking the Welfare Queen


Poetry by:
JEANETTA RICH





Debunking the Welfare Queen


i wonder
if i can rename myself

without having to lie on my back
or
underfoot

if i can speak
and be spared from digits
slipping into
one of my orifices

my newest desire
may be
simply to stand at the square and stretch my shoulders

without looking up and squinting
gnashing teeth
or
clenching fists

evolution
has caused a tiny crater at the crown of my head

my forehead protrudes
i put on a wig to hide it
now it's a trend

i roll my eyes
i have trouble with my sight
not the irony of my wig

i smack my teeth
a few are missing because of the grinding at night
i try to smile but i don't want to scare anyone

i've never had a good night's sleep
i've always had to protect my head

so i was late for the interview
i didn't get the job

there's a sway in my walk
i'm not a lush

just lopsided
i have 16 degree scoliosis

you say not true because i have wide shoulders and muscular arms
you say i'm a liar

i am exhausted
explaining my disposition
therefore
i don't deserve work

i
carry groceries i
carry laundry
i
carry babies i
carry
sometimes not my own

and i have to

to remain resilient

Reluctantly,
I own the Original.

i only know Nina Simone ballads
when i was just a harmless thing

my mother armed me with resolve
gave me “Little Girl Blue”

she tried to save me from this life
but couldn't afford the piano lessons

a waste
             because i have long

elegant fingers




Follow Jeanetta:

Instagram: @jeanettaprich

Bio:

Jeanetta Rich is a mother and poet. Her  work focuses on the emotional lives of women who aren't equipped with voices because of their poverty and/or lack of education. In 2018 she was published in the anthology "Clark".









NEW YORK, NEW YORK
EST 2020
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NEW YORK, NEW YORK
EST 2020 
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© THE QUARTERLESS REVIEW ALL RIGHTS RESERVED