her words are semi-automatic rounds fired from her metal gut
do not fuck with her
this girl knows how to say “cunt”
emphasizing each consonant like a brooklynite biting his tongue
she stands like a soldier
on stage she sets herself on fire and its the audience who are left with third degree burns
leather jacket and heels
a camel hanging off her red lipstick
her red lipstick a soapbox
for the symphonic neurotic urgent purging of the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez

she is a punk rock train plummeting down the ugly slopes of the rocky mountains into sure oblivion
she screeches, sparks fly from the silver tongue permanently embedded in her cheek
but then she pulls the emergency brake and from the chainsaw sound of chaos
the train stops
in the silence she makes firm eye contact
points a forty-four magnum at your chest
you can almost hear the heartbeats in her bullets

chaos and well-thought out speeches
order and sober drunk shit storms from heaven
none of us are safe from the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez

(i challenged her to whiskey
and as i dropped an ice cube in my glass
i’m fine
she says
this girl
the ice
just waters it down
i’ll drink you under the table she said
and we toasted
to new regrets
and at the very least
bad poetry)

the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez
is not easily saturated to the regimens of pen and paper
it is violence with feathers
it is peace with bombs
it is words like unfiltered cigarettes
mental pictures like sepia snapshots
it’s a short girl standing on 4 am tables crying honest
a decibel in her voice for every woman, man and child who cannot vocalize
varinia’s poetry is getting kicked out of bullshit stores for breaking in the sales windows
i bet some nights she sits at the window like a cat, anxious of everything
i bet some nights she sits at the window like a sniper, anxious of everything

the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez
you have two options
hear what she has to say or hear what she has to say
and stubbornness is irrelevant
when honesty is pertinent
and varinia rodriguez is a loud speaker
and varinia rodriguez is a warm hug from an old friend in the cold breath of denver
and varinia rodriguez is a song that you have to hear now not later
and the psychological warfare of varinia rodriguez is the heart under the floorboards breaking though with a crowbar while you’re trying to sleep in ignorance
but it is inevitable



Author: brice maiurro

Denver poet. Author of Stupid Flowers, out now through Punch Drunk Press.


  1. & are you acquainted with Berkeley’s Julia Vinograd? (Unless she made it to San Diego when I was all tied up in my own poeticizing, I haven’t met her — but she sounds a lot like your lady.)

      1. Appears in ‘Street Spirit’ often. Books through Zeitgeist Press. (I’ve got a heap, which I occasionally munch carefully, like candy. Picked them up at a Street Newspaper convention in SF twelve years ago) —

        till a dress shop I was in suddenly stopped cold
        while a fat black woman with dyed orange hair
        screamed over and over: “I didn’t! I didn’t!”
        The shopgirl helping me shooed me back into my booth
        with one hand, watching only the cops.
        She held her breath. So did I.
        When they’d all left I realized
        I had no idea if the policemen were black or white.
        They were policeman-colored
        and everything I’d thought I’d learned was silly.”

  2. Awesomely entertaining…..what a wonderful talent and ability to translate life in the 21st century with scathing and beautifully written poetry! You have a brand new fan!!

  3. I love it when someone says something in raw form. No fancy dictionary descriptions that need to be pronounced slowly. She is everyone and in between the lines, a little bit of relief. Thank you for sharing her tale.

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