Girl, Afraid / Men and Fish / Vincent Van Gogh - Jamie Kahn



I’m a sad little thing

with a habit of pouring my cereal into coffee cups

I am confused and pathetic

in the adorable sense that beckons for assistance

please, carry me home late at night

and tuck me into my blankets when I have nothing left inside of me

I am easy to drain, for I am so small

dry my cheeks when they are cluttered with white morbidity

and kiss them when my glasses are crooked and broken

I need violent passion carried in soft hands

I am a girl, afraid

startled and shocked by the slippery ice under my shoes

handle with care.


She can’t keep a man, they say

hell, she can’t even keep a goldfish

they all tend to drown in her bathtub

filled to the rim with day-old wine

and week-old roses


She lives in that bathroom

in the claw foot tub

with the red ring stain

that’s consumed so many goldfish

and so many men


Wilted rose petals

stuck in her tangled mane


and to drunk to take another swim


Vincent Van Gogh was one lucky son of a bitch

when you really get down to it

wouldn’t we all love to just sit around making art?

nobody told the man he was good at what he did,

that was much later determined

but still his saint of a brother kept him in good paints

a mad genius he was

with somebody taking care of him







About the Author

JAMIE KAHN has been honorably mentioned in the DeSales University Poetry Contest. She lives and attends school in Pennsylvania.