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Juliet Cook and Darryl Shupe



Step right up, don't be shy,
it's the carni-vorous bloodbath!

In this dartboard trailer,
a kid wins a pink teddy bear.
As the carnie reaches out,
the bear tears his arm off then peels the skin
like the carnie is a human onion.

Next trailer over at the ring toss,
a kid doesn't win a goldfish.
Instead he gets tossed into the great white dunk tank.

Everybody wins a prize at this model trailer.
Everyone leaves happy
if they get to leave at all
with their own head intact.

It's hard to leave when you have a dart
piercing your temple in the middle
of this human-heads-as-dartboards competition.

From a mental gyroscope to a human gyro
filled with dripping brain matter.
Fragmented hot sauce hits the wall.




Spiraling down doom ribbons
hide inside this cart's cotton candy,
aiming to invade your cavities.

A whip of cotton candy
slashes as you stupidly stroll past.

Inside every other baby carriage,
baby heads are replaced with cotton candy.
Baby eyes are replaced with lemonheads.

Nearing the fresh lemonade stand,
a massive sheet of sugar pummels your teeth
into an abscess of rot,
rips them out and pours them down.

Broken teeth and collapsing eyes
are all scrambled together into baby food.

The Italian sausage sandwich is holding
a gift just for you.
One bite into that amalgamation
of fat and pork bits wrapped in intestines
and molten grease burns through your mouth,

lands on a baby model
and sets its head on fire.




Juliet Cook and Darryl Shupe's poetic collaboration was unexpectedly inspired by Juliet having a hissy fit about Darryl's use of the word nasty to describe being drooled on by a sheep at a county fair, because she felt like nasty was an overused word. Instead of staying annoyed, she used his sentence to start a poem, which ended up resulting in eighteen collaborative poems that fuse nasty animal/human hybridization with other disturbing elements of existence. Fifteen other of those poems appear inside a chapbook entitled Short Poems of Violence and Chickens, published by Blood Pudding Press in October 2022 and [available for your perusal]