Lana Del (4 poems)


Lana Del Rey Travels Back to the Summer of 2006 to Tell Me Something About My First Love

Remember this.

How his old car wheezes down your block and how it always feels like a chariot. How he lures music out of your dusty guitar and you write down a metaphor for your body. Remember the parking lot. The pipe you carve out of an apple. How he looks at you. The boxed-wine of your purple mouth. Remember waiting in his passenger seat as you watch him buy condoms and a pint of ice cream. Remember shooting illegal fireworks at the end of the cul-de-sac at his drunk uncle’s barbecue, how they scratch the sky.

You will lose this. No one ever thinks it’s possible.

The chariot will shrink back into a 1986 civic and disappear around the corner. The guitar becomes a mute decoration. The high fades, the apple rots. He never looks at you. The condoms expire in his wallet. The fireworks scar into a new sky, for new lovers. And you’ll hurt worse than the songs say. And you’ll swear you won’t ever fall again. And you will. But never like this. Like the first. You won’t ride pegs. You’ll swear by seatbelts. And when another one says ’til the end of time, you’ll know.

Lana Del Rey Walks Through Airport Security

The TSA agent with his little flashlight takes her passport and smiles. He likes knowing her real name—a secret—a phone number written on a bar napkin. Of course she’s one of those women who wears heels in airports I think, as she bends over to remove her chunky white mary janes. Everyone’s eyes fly towards her, and I could probably slip a family-sized bottle of shampoo through bag check right now and go unnoticed. I don’t try. As she walks by, people mutter bombshell and dynamite, which leads to extra pat downs and delays. Great. I’m going to miss my flight. I walk through the x-ray machine and am ushered over to an agent who swipes my palms, but I know full well the only residue he will find on them is from Cheetos. I’m embarrassed by how clean I am, how safe. Lana walks through the metal detector and it whistles at her. A female agent pushes another out of the way to be the one to frisk her. Lana says What’s the matter? No fellas? Most girls leave footsteps behind them. Lana leaves a trail of flopping tongues. She picks one up, autographs it, throws it over her shoulder and walks to our gate. We’re late, of course, but the plane waits for her like a high school boy might—outside her window, his pockets full of rocks.

Lana Del Rey Meets Me in My Bathroom Mirror

She wants to put on my make-up. Sit down she says. Toilet is fine. I don’t have many products, I tell her. You know. Groceries. Rent. She says It’s okay, drug store stuff is what I used to use when I lived in that trailer park. She’s wearing cut-off denim shorts and the pockets hang out past the fringed hem. Is it okay if I straddle you? she asks, and straddles me before I can answer. Her legs are smooth. I hate shaving because all I need to do it walk into an air-conditioned room or look at a black and white photograph or be kissed below my neck and my hair grows back right then in little knives. I bet that never happens to her, I think, as she turns my bottle of concealer over in her hands and spreads it on my face. To even things out, cover up the dark spots she says. You should do that on your face, but not in your art. Art is the dark spots. She leans back, inspecting me. She takes a little bit of the concealer and rubs it into a bruise on her thigh, but it disappears before I can ask where it came from. Suck your face in like a fish, she says, taking a fluffy brush and dusting bronzer on the hollows of my cheeks, my forehead, under my chin. It tickles but I’m afraid that I’ll laugh too hard and she’ll disappear in a puff of blush. She holds a mirror to my face and says See and I can tell my face looks thinner, gaunt, like all I eat is cherry cola and pills. She sharpens a brow pencil and lets the shavings fall to the floor. I know she has no intention of picking them up—even though this is my bathroom. She pulls out the liquid eyeliner and dips the wand into the bottle, sliding in and out. Cat Eye? I ask. She purrs, lowering herself onto my lap, then jerks my head by grabbing the back of my hair. I almost think she’s going to bite me, but she puts both hands on my face and I feel liquid lick the tops of my lashes up and out towards my temples. Keep them closed she says and her breath is on my face. It’s warm and it smells like Coney Island. This takes many minutes. I don’t mind. Shit she says, and I feel her stick a finger in her mouth and then rub a wet thumb under my eye. She doesn’t say sorry. She lifts herself up and walks back to my make-up bag, which is sooty from uncapped eyeliners and general carelessness. I want to ask her about the names tattooed on her arm but don’t want to miss an obvious reference. I repeat them in my head again and again and make a mental note to look them up later. She returns with mascara, straddles me again, with the wand in hand and the tube in her mouth like a hot pink cigar. They’re long, she says, your eyelashes. You don’t even need falsies. I drop my head and look at her from beneath the long lashes I’m fluttering now. They’ve always been my best feature. Really? I ask, and bite my lower lip. Yeah, she says, but your lips are shit. Don’t worry. I’ve got just the trick. She admires her left hand and unscrews the bauble off a gaudy cocktail ring. The small bathroom fills with a tiny buzz—a bumblebee. She sings to it, in a voice that is a better ad campaign for cigarettes than death. The bee lands on my top lip and it looks back at her as if to say Here? and she nods.

Lana Del Rey Helps Me Decide What My Pussy Tastes Like

It can’t taste like Pepsi-Cola she says.
That’s what mine tastes like. And no one’s
pussy tastes like mine.

She’s sitting on my bathroom sink and painting
her toenails a flamingo shade. Think of something
 she tells me. Not like—hot dogs
or anything.
 She laughs and a diamond tooth
catches the sunlight. Cherry pie
is too obvious. Think fireworks, or money.
The national anthem. The American Flag.

I was a vegetarian waitress at a burger joint once.
People would ask which cow was my favorite—curious
about my brand of blood. I’m reminded of that now,
while Lana Del Rey tries to decide what my pussy tastes like
without ever having tried it.

It is a rite of passage for us girls—to name
our favorite daughters. To taste our cake
and christen it too. To find out what it answers
to when called for in the dark.

And I have to find out what it tastes like, because a man
on the corner of Flatbush Ave and Church
Street asks every time I pass him.

My pussy tastes like skinny dipping
in a glass of bourbon. It tastes like brass knuckles
and blush. It tastes like pop stars eating Poptarts.
Tastes like your mother’s does. Like a small
knife. It tastes like your favorite cock-
tail spiked with antifreeze. It tastes like you
can try it, you can love it, but it will
kill you.

It will kill you.

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