Katherine Webb's Bad Drawings for Good Poetry: Mortara


some planet by jamie mortara (YesYes Books, 2015)

From "your house becomes an angry mouth": 

colin writes suicide letters on the bathroom mirror / threatens to hang himself from the lip of the gutters / tyler says farewell and mark says nothing / you and I hide the ladder and find the last bowl of chili waiting in the kitchen / it speaks after weeks of growing its own being and a taste for riddling: / what is a home but not your home?

The poems in some planet so completely, so capably capture the feeling of being young and lost, full of existential angst while trying to maintain a who-gives-a-shit front, being full of universal hope and wonder while being crushed by the grind, all the while trying to make sense of who you are, trying to love yourself, and maybe love another, maybe accept the love of others. Reading the book made me feel like I was 22, drunk, and depressed again, but this time, I had someone saying, "Open your eyes, kid. Look up at the stars."

For some reason, no image better captured that feeling, or jamie's sense of humor, than this bowl of riddling chili. 

Katherine Webb is responsible for our Bad Drawings for Good Poetry feature. She is a writer, editor and educator in Birmingham, Alabama, where she directs the Nitty-Gritty Magic City Reading Series. She's always on the lookout for new writers to host. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Bitter SouthernerPANK, among others. She’s not a visual artist.