Academic journal article The Midwest Quarterly

The Home of the Radioactive Cats

Academic journal article The Midwest Quarterly

The Home of the Radioactive Cats

Article excerpt

   in the home of the Radioactive Cats    an old trailer-dwelling couple     sets out supper, straight from the fridge    bread and cheese     the cats, glowing, green, rub against ankles    follow the old man     from the table to the rusty metal chair out front    on the makeshift porch where he stokes his pipe     the cats, they're killing me anyway,    might as well smoke     the old woman scrapes off the plates    the cats play with the crusts     their bodies are almost transparent,    bulbous green muscles     arched green backs smooth green fur    (and here comes one now with delicate stealthy tread     cautious ears    flattened against the head     dreamcat, why are you here    in the real?) 

Janet McCann has published one book of poems, Looking for Buddha in the Barbed-Wire Garden (Avisson Press, 1996), and four chapbooks, the most recent of which is Afterword (Francisan Univ. Press, 1990), which won their chapbook competition. She has .also published a creative and critical thinking textbook, an anthology of Christian poetry, and biographical/critical book on Wallace Stevens. She has published more than 600 poems in journals, including Kansas Quarterly, Parnassus, Nimrod, New York Quarterly, McCall's, and others. In 1989 she received a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship. She teaches at Texas A & M University.

Poetically I guess I could describe myself as a fairly direct writer with a populist edge. I want to widen the audience for poetry not merely through combining it with other arts, becoming a performance poet with a guitar, although I have great respect for a lot of performance poetry. …

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