Bad Dates. Good Poems.

These dates.

These men.

The ones who hurt me, bore me,

make me write poetry,

inspire me to mock them,

to examine the details of their behavior

until they are only what they are to me.

Can they all be as ridiculous as they are to me?

Or do I just refuse to forgive them for things they

haven’t yet had a chance to do?

No man stands a chance.

And I still think, foolishly, that there is a man.

A chance.

One more time for one more date to be right.

So I go

knowing that, even if it’s not right

at least I’ll get a poem out of it.

A poem that snakes around the innocent boy

who sits in front of me, thinking his own thoughts,

and trying to connect and get laid and, maybe even,

I’d like to think,

fall in love.

And if it’s him across from me,

If he’s the one,

I think I’ll make fun of the one, too.

I have a lot of bad dates.

But I write a lot of good poems.

How to Stay Bitter Through the Happiest Times of Your Life

by Anita Liberty

Villard •  June, 2006

All material copyright © 2006 suzanne weber

no stealing yo

Good Date. Bad Poem.

He seemed nice.

He was smart.

And funny.

And cute.

I liked his clothes.

The Last Day at My Temp Job

I called this meeting

to announce

that my moment of glory is now,

my delusions of grandeur have become substance,

and today is my last day.

No more pretending to be interested in office politics.

No more biting my tongue at the inanity.

No more trying to make every one of you understand

that I am better than this place.

I escaped.

Dug a tunnel in the middle of my shift,

went towards the light,

and came out on the other side.

I won’t miss any of you.

I don’t want to remember you

or how you treated me.

As if I was one of you.

As if I should care.

Take my name off the e-mail.

Invalidate my passkey.

Empty my drawers.

I’d suggest bronzing my phone

as a memorial to my presence.

It’s the only thing I loved about this job.

The telephone by my desk with four lines

and as many long distance calls as I could dial.

I will be your claim to fame.

All of you will say you knew me when.

And I will deny it.

People Who Want to Make a Movie of the Story of My Life and the Things They Say that Make Me Say,

“Wait... What?”

The story of your life needs to be more commercial.

Performance poetry is not commercial.

No audience is going to want to watch someone talking    

    onstage in front of a mike for an hour and a half.

In the movie, Anita Liberty can't be a performance poet.

She can be like, maybe like, she can be a fashion designer.

We’re hungry for a late-twenty-something revenge comedy,

    but we don't want Anita to exact her revenge by humiliating

    her ex-boyfriend in public.

That’s too mean.

And, in general, we think Anita's too angry.

She needs to be shown doing something nice for someone.

And Mitchell's perspective has to be sympathetic.

And Mitchell's new girlfriend, Heather, oh, what if Heather is a brain surgeon?

Or what if, maybe, what if Anita just thinks Heather's a blonde

    bombshell, but, in fact, it's revealed in the end that

    Heather's a black woman?

In the end, Mitchell and Anita should get back together.

In the end, Anita and Heather become best friends.

In the end, Anita Liberty should realize the error of her ways.

In the end, Anita Liberty will be played by Hilary Duff.