Features issue 31 poetry

Redirect Examination by The Alpha’s Attorney

by Jenny Molberg

but buy try  12” x 18” acrylic and collage

A portrait of Thomas Jefferson, an African sculpture, and contemporary photographs of faces collages with text on a red and orange background.
but buy try by Mark McKain

Redirect Examination by The Alpha’s Attorney

The MeToo poem was shocking, was it not? This was her dogged power of persuasion and not your actions, correct? The accused has written a poem about your treatment of her, has she not? And the poem, though it does not name you, leads people to believe you are the abuser because the whole world is watching, correct? She takes your private statements wildly out of context in this poem that details her experience with “abuse,” does she not? Though you did none of these things, you recognize yourself in the poem, correct? You are baffled, are you not, to have been MeToo-ed? This causes you great emotional and professional harm, yes? Her poems exceed the boundary of creative expression, yes? And the other woman, she affirmed the false claims of this poet, did she not? She is a liar too, is she not? And all the other women, liars as well, correct?

Jenny Molberg is the author of three poetry collections: Marvels of the Invisible (Tupelo Press, 2017), Refusal (LSU Press, 2020), and The Court of No Record (forthcoming from LSU Press, 2023). An NEA fellow, her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in VIDA, Ploughshares, The Missouri Review, The Rumpus, The Adroit Journal, AGNI, Oprah Quarterly, and other publications. She is an Associate Professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Central Missouri, where she directs Pleiades Press and edits Pleiades magazine.

Mark McKain’s work has appeared in Agni, The Journal, Subtropics, Green Mountains Review, ISLE, Tupelo Quarterly, and elsewhere. His chapbook Blue Sun was published by Aldrich Press. He experiences global warming in St. Petersburg, Florida.