Fiction and Poetry 3am Magazine Contact Links Submission Guidelines




Daniel Nester

Hot Blooded

Our horrible rock band practices
for its Friday night set
in the singer's apartment.
The gig will take place
at a Scrabble parlor
where serious wordsmiths
swill pints of beer
and soak in enough dissonance
to dismantle the words
they speak. Our graybeard singer
can't remember his lyrics,
and so puts an easel
in front of himself. He looks like
a portrait painter
singing in front of
a horrible rock band.

The singer's room is filled
with framed pictures
of his wife's naked ass.
After drinking enough wine
to palliate the pain
of "China Grove," I suggest
covering a Foreigner song.
Blank faces all around.
In a roomful of naked asses,
I begrudgingly explain
the story of "Hot Blooded,"
a song from junior high. I say
it's the story of a young girl.
The girl may or may not
be of legal age. Women
throw underwear onstage
during this song, I explain.

The singer plays his song,
a composition for voice
and zither-I think it was called
"Snow Leopard's Lament"-
and I explode. What I want here-
what I want for us, I say-
is panties, the body's
temperature to rise,
not for hands that put down
wooden letters to clap along.
"Hot Blooded"'s simple thesis
I reiterate, is pure sex, I say,
like Ravel or James Brown. After the gig,
the singer's wife complains
in her Danish accent
that she "can't hear the words."
Taking a page from
recent literary theory,
I say sometimes words
aren't critical at all, that
the simple sound of the voice,
her husband's easel-aided
utterance, would suffice.
She shirks this off, and carries
her old man's antediluvian
teleprompter out to the car.

We do not play "Hot Blooded."
We do play paeans to the woman
who can't hear our verds.
The Scrabble players clap along
and gaze up at us. It is a gaze
known only to players
in horrible rock bands,
or those who care
to remember true
rooms-full-of-naked-ass picture failure.

Rick Springfield's Commentary, "Jessie's Girl" (1982)

"I've always admired the box
of chords in disguise,
the singer singing

simple teenage songs,
post-song songs,
songs some still sing,

alone and embarrassed.
And I know I can know
more than I know only

from where I know it-
so this circuit creeps
past my hands as

I plunk it out, this song exists
whether I know it or not.
Listen up-questions

such as Where's The Girl
For Me knew no age-so
forget twenty years ago and

forget moments better suited
for jumpsuits-moments
handmade for a soap opera

idol to fancify-successfully,
tragically. Let those mirror-
looking moments pass.

Just be sad
it has to be this way-
And remember me-I'm still singing

those three summer minutes
straight through
my body's cheap veil."

Long-Distance Runaround

one of my hometown friends almost pissed himself laughing when
another hometown friend the one who feigned illness to get out of being
my best man at my wedding with a leg injury suggested a few
band names-the one in question was Fozzy Fosbourne
a play on of course the muppet show regular with the wakka
wakka shtick and the heavy metal figurehead and lead singer of
black sabbath ozzy osbourne for some reason Tom
who's been popping pills like he was his own eckerd
drugs just busted out laughing at the mention of it he just
got out of hand with the reaction which is curious for
a number of reasons one of which is Tom's aversion to
all things heavy metal there was a time when he would simply
leave a room when there was the sound of fuzz not even
guitar fuzz I'm talking even anyone with a smoker's husk
he wanted his music you know pure pure in the sense that
it was unmediated or whatever when of course we all
know that things are mediated to some degree and so
on this night a couple weekends ago one friend who I
shouldn't even speak with his name is Bob and another
who is popping post-divorce pain pills like valley of the dolls
these two grown men starting laughing about a funny band name
Fozzy Fosbourne is a pretty funny name though I think
and I was left out of it I was too far away I moved away from home

Tables Strata Timebegon

countless visits, the bulge
yes, the bulge

Crapping on
the lower quadrant, the
mack, yes the mack

of unreward
and I appreciate this
around your neck

around your neck in that table
tennis strategy employed
by bluebloods who

have been abroad with-
out a care in the
world They spin it

Oh They spin the ball
up in the
tight white lines laugh

at their skills makes
me wanna pounce
acorss the time-

Be gone, be gone,
Skillful Worldly Player,
Play on, ZeuserFan.

Play on.


Daniel Nester is the author of God Save My Queen (Soft Skull Press), which is a meditation on his obsession with the rock band Queen. He is the editor of the online journal Unpleasant Event Schedule, as well as a contributing editor for Painted Bride Quarterly and DUCKY. His work has appeared or will appear in Open City, Nerve, Columbia Poetry Review, LIT, Crazyhorse, and The Best American Poetry 2003.

home | buzzwords
fiction and poetry | literature | arts | politica | music | nonfiction
| offers | contact | guidelines | advertise | webmasters
Copyright © 2005, 3 AM Magazine. All Rights Reserved.