Laura Warman

Why I Don't Want Your Dick There In That Poem

By Laura Warman

  1. I am the poetry editor for Queen Mob’s Teahouse
  2. I am also a reader for jubilat
  3. I am also the editor of my own press, GLASS PRESS
  4. I read submissions a lot
  5. Probably every day
  6. Often I come across images of dicks
  7. These dicks aren’t necessarily connected to a body
  8. These dicks throw themselves on the page
  9. They have no fears, they are not vulnerable
  10. These are very specific dicks
  11. Let’s call them cis-male, white, straight, upper/middle class dicks
  12. Of course that isn’t all
  13. Of course I can’t categorize these dicks in this way
  14. Recently I rejected a poem on the sole basis of what I viewed as a problematic positioning of The Dick in the poem
  15. The Author of the Dick Poem replied saying I was “asinine” and “foolish” for rejecting a poem based on this
  16. Of course I am both of those things!
  17. The Girl
  18. My rejection of the poem was seen by him to trivialize my position as an Editor
  19. As-If editorial choices are made without bias!
  20. Editors are generally white cis-males
  21. These editors are generally treated as if they are without bias and publishing the Best work that gets submitted to them
  22. Because I have never been able to see or write past my body I am the one with the bias
  23. But, we are all working within the hegemonic patriarchy of capitalism
  24. I show you my bias freely
  25. I, the woman, (the Dickless), am at the other end of binary desire in the rape culture
  26. Yes, Literature is reflective of this rape subculture
  27. Yes, I am opposed to poems that support the binary of power, aggression, desire
  28. The dick in the poem is always doing something
  29. The dick in the poem is not static

Originally published at Queen Mob's Teahouse

Warman Writes About Sex

By Laura Warman


Many people have questions about what sex is, but it isn’t always easy to get good advice! Here is some good advice! Last time I had sex it was on the stairs. Can you believe it? Have you ever had sex in a bathroom? I have, just while I was sitting on a sink. I let my legs hang on either side of the sink. How did I not break the sink? Have you ever broken a sink? I thought I had broken my sink in my new house because I often cannot stand in the morning so I lean all of my body weight against the sink. I lean so hard I lean so forward. My hipbone feels nice with the pressure from the cold ceramic. What are sinks made of? My sink feels hard and cold. Have you ever felt hard & cold? Hard things don’t always feel cold… Sometimes when I turn on my sink the water comes out so fast it pools at the bottom of the basin. Liquid mixed with hair and- look at it- the clogged sink. What clogs a sink? Can I ever release everything that is stuck? Sometimes I turn on my sink too hot! Have you ever felt anything that hot? I put my hand in the water and just like that I have to remove it. I want the water so bad but I can’t have it- not like that.

Some people birth in the water. The water fills with everything- shit, blood, placenta. This seems like the best way to give birth. Is birth sex? Sometimes women have orgasms when they are giving birth so it is sex too. Pop that cherry!  Kim Kardashian probably did not orgasm while birthing because she probably did not give birth vaginally because the baby was five weeks early, weighing five pounds. In Kanye West’s album Yeezus on the track ”Bound 2” he states ”How you gon’ be mad on vacation” and ”Got a fresh cut straight out the salon, bitch” and ”I’m tired, you tired, Jesus wept”. Most important is the line, ”I wanna fuck you hard on the sink/ After that, give you something to drink/ Step back, can’t get spunk on the mink/ I mean damn, what would Jeromey Romey Romey think?” Kanye West not only has a thing for fucking hard (look back to his tweet: ”I just fucked Kim so hard”) but has a thing for sinks. In his 2010 album ”My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” he says, ”Been a long time since I spoke to you/ In a bathroom ripping you up fucking and choking you” later in his collaboration album with Jay-Z ”Watch the Throne” Kanye West states ”Meet me in the bathroom stall/ And show me why you deserve to have it all”. What is it about the sink? What is it about the bathroom?

In the morning my sink is often my first feeling of the erotic. Are some sinks more erotic than others? I was reading Dwell magazine the other day it was talking about bathroom sinks and they said ”The sink, designed to be undermounted, was overmounted to expose its similarly unfinished edge”. Holy shit! That might be the most erotic thing I have ever read. Enough to make me lean against the cash register at work on my tip-toes and rub a lil. It’s hard to even get wet at work! Maybe I will transfer departments.


No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!

No sex is safe sex!


It’s Sunday at 7:54 in the morning and I’m trying to think about sex. I’m trying to think about sex the whole day. There was a Super Moon last night that coincided with the beginning of my period, which made me feel lucky, like I really am connected. As I slept I let myself bleed on my legs, the blanket, the mattress. I got up to pee and I was covered in blood- my hands, my thighs, my butt. It feels good to just bleed as I imagine it could feel in Womanity past in the Red Tent. I want another red tent- I want women to unite over something. I want to be bloody and naked with others and finally have enough time to address issues like Capitalism/ Homebirth/ Drones. When I get out of bed everything smells like blood. It was 89 degrees last night- everything is blood and heat. I will not use the word ”Primal”. When I have sex I want to do it with my eyes open.


Many people have questions about how to have sex, but it isn’t always easy to get good advice! Here is some good advice! Oral sex: This includes fellatio(!) where the penis is stimulated by the partner’s mouth, and cunnilingus(!), where the vagina receives oral stimulation! Masturbation means touching yourself in order to feel sexual pleasure! Since you’re doing it by yourself, there’s no risk of pregnancy or STD – making masturbation the safest form of sex there is! Sex is really not that hard to do! I heard from a college professor that it might be easier the dumber you are! Could that be true? I don’t think it is true. I have a lot of smart friends and they all seem pretty good at sex. I have friends who are PHD students, MFA students, Bachelor of Arts students, and even some friends with office jobs! All of them I think qualify as smart. Not all of them have sex. Some of them have sex with women, some of them have sex with men, some of them have sex with machines. The smartest ones are the ones who have sex with machines. Having sex with the machine is the best thing anyone could do! You wont have the risk of STDs and you can REALLY focus on yourself. You don’t even have to clean your machine unless you really want to. Some people, when having sex with a machine, look at photos on Facebook of their friends in bikinis at the beach. I choose to focus on myself instead! I am so beautiful! My body is so soft- who do I keep it soft for? Myself! My bush is so big-always growing! Sometimes I focus on my hip bone. For my size I have surprisingly wide hips- so wide but still containing a small hole (& not a butt hole!!!). Does anyone remember the culture wars? Why aren’t people still afraid of Catholics? I have a lot of smart friends but none of them are afraid of Catholics! We even went to mass on Christmas Eve just for fun and didn’t feel anything strong.


Alive or dead. I am Googling Foucault and someone on their website just called the theories of Foucault ”fruity”. FOUCAULT WENT TO SUICIDE PARTIES FOUCAULT WENT TO ORGIES I HAVE NEVER HEARD OF A SUICIDE PARTY WHAT can I expect to find at my first suicide party how can I get invited to my first suicide party? Will it be like my first sex party? Will people desire to discuss Foucault? Will this ever reach more than ten pages? Ten pages tomorrow when I wake up? Ten pages Friday? Ten pages by Friday says the editor who is me on Mondays. Only have I ever Only have I ever been a virgin once.


At Walgreens Pharmacy on Penn Circle in East Liberty, Pittsburgh, generic Plan B costs $44.99.

At the Rite-Aid on Forbes Avenue in Oakland, Pittsburgh generic Plan B costs $39.99.


Strong feelings are the best feelings to have in the morning. Strong feelings are the best feelings to have at night. Strong feelings when I sit beside you, in front of you or on top of you. Strong feelings age twenty in women’s studies class reading ”How to fuck a fat woman”. Strong feelings when meeting your son. Strong feelings while walking down Highland Avenue on the summer solstice, which is the hottest day of the year so far. I have strong feelings when I wake up strong feelings in the afternoon. I thought I just saw John Goodman’s dick on the television and I couldn’t remember if John Goodman was alive or dead. Sometimes I have strong feelings but most of the time you look hotter on Twitter.


Time and time again I think ”What do I want?” I really have no answer! I can tell you what I don’t want! I don’t want at the poetry reading all the men to talk about their dicks and the women to say they ”finally reached climax like a flower opening in the spring” or ”I found myself slowly awakening- the feeling of you brought tears to my eyes”.  

WOMEN & WOMEN IN POETRY: Let’s fuck let’s fuck let’s penetrate let’s do it gently if we want or fuck with hate. Let’s question why Justin Timberlake won the BET award but care more about why Miley Cyrus can do that but not do that. Let’s question why we must be grouped together constantly as ”women”. Let’s fuck everyone because it actually doesn’t matter. In one month I fucked everyone who lived in four rooms in one house and we are all still friends. WOMEN POETS: WE ARE NOT THE MORE SENSITIVE GENDER WE ARE NOT automatically connected to those we fuck. We can have bad sex and good sex. We can wear short skirts without having to explain slut-positive behavior. We can refuse to use metaphor because metaphor is the tool of the hegemonic white male poet. FUCK Longfellow, FUCK Wordsworth, FUCK Keats. We do not need to search for beauty because we are not beautiful. Beauty is nothing but a tool of the patriarch capitalist to achieve stasis and disconnect from those who threaten its’ power.

Metaphor is just a tool to make The Reader believe in correct answers. Historically, metaphors imply a correct referent. As Women, from birth, we are gendered as multiplicities: slut/ virgin, straight/ queer, mother/ maid, natural/ controlled. These dualities become identities constantly obfuscated through the male gaze. Why continue allowing the male gaze/ metaphor define identity. End metaphors, create personal identities. The Reader will only understand their perspective, why bother continuing the bewilderment through metaphor. Tonight I am going to fuck her in a specific order. I am going to kiss her. I will ask her before I kiss her. I will take off her shirt. I will ask her before I take her shirt off. She will take my shirt off. She will ask first. She will touch me. We will use protection. She will hit me after I ask her too. When we are done we will talk about what went right and what went wrong. We will shake hands. I will leave that night or in the morning. I will not write about it. I will not use a metaphor- I will say we fucked. I will not say the word ”Dick”- even as a grotesque expression of female sexuality.

I will say cunt. I will not say I got ”wet” because it is not wetness exactly. It is plasma seepage from the vaginal walls. It is more basic and less acidic than semen. It contains water, pyridine, squalene, urea, acetic acid, lactic acid, complex alcohols and glycols, ketones and aldehydes. It varies in taste texture, acidity, and odor depending on menstrual cycle, arousal, diet, and drugs. There are no metaphors for women’s sexuality. White Canadian Robin Thicke says ”I love black music” on the 2013 BET Awards. There are no metaphors for this. Women: others are constantly defining us through slippages, through metaphors. I am taking control of self-identity, which is the only thing I control. My sexuality is fluid. My fluid is sexual. I teared up today I will tear up tomorrow. We cannot deny Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus. We cannot explain the difference but we can allow for individual perspective locating personage to fame. As a poet, I am welcoming you into my identity. I am not hiding self from you I am asking you to play the most important role—The Reader.

At the last poetry reading 3/6 performers were men. At the last poetry reading 3/6 performers were women. Out of the 3 woman-identified performers none of them spoke about their dicks or vaginas in clear terms. Why must this continue? Why must female sexuality be a confused metaphor? Why must female sexuality continue to be identified as complex/ layered? Metaphors only encourage this attitude! End the patriarch! End the metaphor!

Originally published by Queen Mob's Teahouse.

Creditor/Debtor Relation

By Laura Warman

They ask me if I owe them anything and I calculate all our interactions and the times they have hurt me against the times I have hurt them and determine we are even.

the girls body is the public body the girl is the purchaser as a girl I

The main problem now with society is we aren’t able to think as a collective. We continually convince ourselves and each other that we are individuals and we are making these choices as individuals.

daddy gave me my credit score

I am walking down the street in San Fransisco and four children on the sidewalk are picking up pieces of broken glass and throwing them at each other

If we could see ourselves as a collective we could begin to form a  future where we weren’t Freelancers or Adjuncts and we would All Make More Money.

he touched me and I let him because I knew my body wasn't my body And would never be my body the girl

Tonight I will watch a film Tonight  I  will  go  to  the grocery store

There  is  a  grocery  store called whole foods

There  is  a  grocery  store called trader joes

There  is  a  grocery  store called stop and shop

And I go there and I buy that and I like it

the  girls  body  is  the  plastic body

you believe in me because of my credit score

we applaud Corporation for risk taking we Return their assets when they disappear 

We reward productivity

I’m working on Myself

I am doing Work I am taking some time for Me

I am nothing and i am working towards nothing

time becomes something that we choose 

that we can give away that can become owned

He said he flirts with everyone, even dogs, so I shouldn’t take it personally that he flirted with me and didn’t want me.

The STI is almost gone, the baby is gone.

The creditor/ debtor relation is one based on time.

I will go to the gym.

I will run on the elliptical for 30 minutes

I will do the abductor for ten minutes

I will do the bike for 20 minutes

You believe in my credit score
You believe in me 

I am always either on a date or getting ready for a date. As if I could ever be Off The Market.

my boyfriend and i exchanged social security numbers

his was not like mine at all he wanted me to have it so i could remember it

I was used to having a boyfriend steal my identity until they actually stole my identity the passionate nature of money makes boyfriend take out accounts in my name makes him acquire debt for me makes him smile makes new girlfriend receive presents from me credit is about desire, power is about fortitude if he has faith in me he will act towards me 

and i know something about faith 

It’s Easter and I walk to another date. We meet at the coffee shop. I walk past the church and the doors open. People in pastel pour out. I hear a noise so foreign; a cry. I look through the crowd and see a baby lamb on a leash. 

Christianity gave us the infinite

Jesus gave us the idea of a repayment plan

Jesus sacrificed himself for our debt

The Original Scale is The Body

We place the poison everywhere and the ants quickly find it and drink and drink 

I am at the lecture and everyone is asking questions that aren’t questions. I raise my hand and say “What does the future look like for people without the Internet?” and the lecturer says “Very bleak, more poverty is guaranteed. More dichotomy. More suffering.” 

The metaphoric violence was at first easy to ignore 

Everyone gets followed down the street 

in the dark

at night

after the bar

everyone gets told to smile and smiles

Commodification requires a clear sign in the signifier/ signified relationship 

Okay, this is a poem about My Body 

This is a poem about my interactions with capital 

This is a poem about The Boyfriend 

I will make this concrete so we can consume it

sell it

till it leaves

till it becomes Absence


This is not art this is money sorry 

Representation is Ownership He touches my shoulder and I let him because he has more power than me. 

And you do it again. And you do it again. And I let you do it again.

Originally published at Ruth Stone Foundation.