Five Poems from Monologues in the Era of the Monologist: Julie Strand


Ego Eco Iceberg: In the Dreamscape of the Monologist

Bigly I love you. Bigly because
the density of pure ice is about 920 kg/m³.

Bigly I swear, that the density of seawater
is 1025 kg/m³, is bigly you know.

And bigly I hate you, but bigly I care.
Bigly because most of me is

above the waterline. Bigly,
I am a man. Bigly see my shape?

Its underwater portion
is just difficult to judge. I am bigly

in charge, bigly above the surface.
Look at this portion. With this, I stomp the lands.

With this, I make the laws. Look
at that expression

“tip of the iceberg”

It is who I am.
No is who you are,

a problem that is only a
small of a large. And bigly

I am the master, an Iceberg
bigly ranging from a

um, 1 to 75 metres (3.3 to 246.1 ft)
weighing 100,000 to 200,000 metric tons.

Yeah, feel the heft
(110,000 to 220,000 short tons) of

this ruler.



I’m sorry I’m standing next to you, grabbed the donut as you did, spoke first.

Oops! I walked right into your path knowing you have places to be.

Sorry. Ugh, that time I ran right into you didn’t I?

But, sorry somehow that horizon, its ridge line has trees fuzzy like a dream here and there.

Sure, like memories tucked inside.

The word sorry sounds funny from me?

I’m sorry. I guess I could try harder to wipe it of my longing for another word,

but it’s lives way behind my teeth, tangles with the tarter.

You’re right, I should be brushing more. I’m sorry.

And again, I did have a thought that was a little gross.

Oh! Okay again again, I am in your way, I do move about the world in a body,

the same size as yours. Oh yeah, bigger. No need for the measuring tape.

Yes, you are beautiful, funny, interesting, important.

I’m sorry, but I’m still more interested in that mountain, its dreams.

Look, part reminder part wonder.

My goodness, yes you’re right too,

meaning isn’t just in a word, or a mountain, or a man, but its use.

Yes sorry, I should take them back.

I’ll just pick them up and carry them around,

lug them like a flower with its petals glued back on.


“Bergie Seltzer” Patent of the Monologist

Nowadays, I know words. I have the best words.
I’ve been making them for years to fit us all, by myself
of the winds and the currents of the Ross Ice Shelf
and Antarctica itself. Oh Purity. Get a satellite up there
and see the process for yourself.

We can/should/will hunt that B-15, 11,000 square kilometers
(4,200 sq mi) and dissolve it, another word for the world’s mouths,
a word for what ails you all.

And you won’t miss that shelf I’ll melt to make more words.
You’ll be too busy chewing on the hearty, filling letters, patented
and refreshing golden nuggets for your tonsils. And oh wait,
who said it first? I did. That’s me in your mouth don’t forget, drowning
out all those inferior and weak words.

And trying to bring those shelves back by buying freezers,
won’t work. They’re too small. You’re too small. And trying to
organize a coalition of freezers won’t either, nasty you forget who
owns the patent office.

We all had too much ice to begin with. I’m replacing it, with better things.
I’m replacing it with words like bigly, words like huge, words like tremendous
and braggadocious. They taste sweet to me. Open up and swallow.



What we put in front of our eyes can protect us, fill us with what we want, curate an insides quivering in the was we are comfortable with.

If I ask you to wear a robe and only let me touch your ass for the rest of my left, would that be okay?

I keep meaning to throw away the owl statue, the rabbit skull, the picture of Gertrude, but I like their vibrations too much, the longing and nostalgia too much.

If I hide my poems about you behind a painting of a frozen lake caving in for both to visit in shame, would that be okay?

I watch the same TV over and over, refer to the same books, point to the same self defining moments as if I am fully made, perfect, happy.

If I ask  you to write me a message, scroll it in a bottle, and bury it under an unowned window, would that be okay?


In the Office of the Monologist
for Sanity


Did I say that / I never said that / Wrong Wrong / Wrong I / didn’t say that / Wrong Wrong

Here’s my couch / Sweetie / Sunshine / Made-up Nasty / I’m going to say this /  I’m going to say

that / Now this / and that / Now neither and never did I


I can vote. I can sing. I can wear a short skirt and bike. I can hold a sign. I can speak my mind.


My words of yesterday / here’s my couch / never happened and don’t matter / erase erase off /

the record off / your opinion / my words of today and today and today / here’s my couch /


I can have a baby. I can still with money not have a baby. I can get take out every night.


exists in a sealed state / what matters is right now / my face / it says things from holes / into

your holes / here’s my couch / and they matter both / acknowledge me and my hands / agree

agree you agreed

Julie Strand is a poet, teaching writer, and arts administrator living and working in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She received her MFA in creative writing (poetry) from Boise State University in 2013.  Her chapbook, The Mae West Defense, was published by dancing girl press in 2009. Her poems have appeared in Caffeine Destiny, Weave Magazine, FOURSQUARE, Arsenic Lobster, The New Gnus, JUPITER 88, Wicked Alice, Cant Journal, Delirious Hem, The Boisean, and others.

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