Selfish Emotions

by Cassi Clark, 2000


I want to turn the music

and TV up until the ringing

silence in my ears is killed, until

they bleed and the pain in

in my heart and mind is

drowned-out. I cannot take

another wordless day in this

empty house, nor another

unvoiced night listening to you

talk to anyone but me.


I want the noise to bother

you, to make you notice me,

have time for me, miss me.

I want the noise to envelop

me till there is no me, just

my remnants, room, desk,

made-up bed, poems, memory.


I want you to wish you’d

spent more time talking

to me, telling me about

your boyfriend, school, why you

cried last night. I want you

to wish we’d watched X-files

together, and wish you knew

why I cry. I want you

to wish you’d spent more time

enjoying our friendship. I

want you to miss me like I

miss you.

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Sandwich Board Preacher

Cassi Clark, 1999


dances around the outdoor amphitheatre.

His back says study the bible, Trust Jesus.

His front warns liberal arts students,

of their judgment and doom for being

Muslim, Her Krishna’s, adulterers,

queers, liars, non-witnessing Christians,

and worst of all Mormons. 

A girl asks about God’s grace and Jesus?

Oh him. Where does it say God loves everyone


John 3:16, for God so loved us,

he gave his only begotten son.

No. It doesn’t count.

It doesn’t say May 5, 1999.

Off Season Obsession

Cassi Clark, 1998


I painfully drag myself out of my warm down bed hours

before my slumbering roommate twitches awake.

Bundled in winter fleece to fight fall’s promising

chill I step out into crisp post-rain pre-sunrise air.

An LTD bus passes spewing exhaust, I smile thinking

of that pleasant smell from many seasons of team skiing.


In the computer lab, I surf snow reports and skiing

stats, dreaming of carved turns, counting the hours

till I can ski again: 1462ish. 2 months. I try to stop thinking

as I walk to a coffee shop, but inside the smell of cocoa awakes

my obsession. Avoiding homework, past Powder issues promise


a great season. It was. This year’s Farmer’s Almanac promises

a winter as good as when the Columbia River froze over. Skiing

powder in Oregon!!! One can only hope. Back outside the air

teases of snow. Excitement surges my body, 1460ish hours!!

Two months till the rain turns to snow and the mountains awake

with alpine junkies. Clouds keep heat in, I sigh, but thinking


back, the last two weeks have been clear and cool. I think

of Colorado’s clear skies and snowy winter ground. The promise

of what could be overwhelms me. I want to tell everyone, to awake

in them my predictive excitement about this season’s skiing

we are about to be blessed with. Only 1459ish hours!!

In aerobics, I turn that energy to squat energy, pulling air


with my hands, resisting pushing my butt out, to a tuck getting air

over imaginary cliffs. I took the class for ski conditioning. I think

it’s working. I am mentally and physically ready. Just 1458ish hours!

Home at last my roommate and I tune our skis, reminiscing and promising

to ski at least 100 days this year. We put ‘em on in the living room and ski

to Blizzard of OZ. The fumes of wax and sounds of sharpening awakening


race day memories. We talke for hours about our craziest runs, staying awake

till 4:00. Tucking mogul fields, Velcro flops in NW mung, and big (10 feet) air,

flinging ourselves off cliffs, powder turns through trees. I want to go skiing!!!

After graduation we want to live the endless winter. But I think

this year will be great in the Cascades; we’ll be skiing. And the FA promises

face shots and epic skiing. I read once, that a man said he spent more hours


obsessing about skiing, than sex. Skiing only ruled his mind till noon. I think

it’s now about 6:00am again!! And he calls himself obsessed! Outside, air

wet and cold, I dream leaves are snowdrifts. 1456ish hours!!

© 2017 by Cassi Clark, Art Work by Katie Elizabeth Designs