Prius Mattress Neckie Jeep

Michael Fertik


Oh, carbon Chrysler bromide!

Thank G-d for your offgas

Polyvinyl chloride



Fine tiny olfactory divine,

New Jeep smell pixie,

Slay the shit out of the

Puny memory sprite.


Never had nothing with NO ONE in this car!

Vin Number 1C4RJFGN4JC284331;

This model is fresh, untainted,

Like the better me, I hope.


Virgin leather driver seat.  Out, damned spot!  Ha!

Your sweet poison scent




No one has ever made this place foul with my/your heart rate

Like the Rip Van Winkle Aireloom mattress

With its divots and highlight reels

Sweating poison.


Same as the purple neckie the other one gave me

Abrading my face like a Snapchat filter

Reminding me of our year (was it two?)

Tiny pixie, make me forget.


I still have it.

It’s purple.


I’ll throw it away soon and buy a better neckie.


Then the mattress and the box spring.

I’ll shed them leftovers like

An actress sheds cell phone numbers . . .



The Dupont textured Saxony cut pile carpet.

Got to tear that out like a shitty hair weave.

Maybe move house to ankle that sex anvil.)


. . . First things first.  Make room for new.


Bitch of a white goddess, supine and lecherous on golden bough:

Release me from your knowing

That I may ridicule the superstition of my gods

And breathe in the cleaning latex compounds of a new Jeep


And the fragrance of new skin.





Michael Fertik is a published fiction author, poet, produced film writer, and playwright. His poetry, short fiction, and novellas have recently appeared in Minor Lits; december; The Write Launch; Eclectica; Litro; Cease, Cows; Feminine Collective; etc.. His writing has won fiction, poetry, and film prizes and includes a New York Times Bestseller. He lives in Palo Alto, California.

"I like the idea that poems can have sequels. If books and movies can have sequels, why can’t song and poem? This poem is a sequel to another, published elsewhere, called “Two Years, Ablative.” Intended as an example of Material Culture verse, “Prius Mattress Neckie Jeep” seeks to evoke concepts articulated by Robert Graves, James George Frazer, and Lizabeth Cohen, among others, of myth and object, and to emplace them in a very contemporary setting, in a very 21st century moment in a young person’s life. The ambition of the poem, if there is one, is to call on devices anciently used for epic verse and to slip them into lines that might be relevant for us now. The reflection of the poem is a turning point in the digestion of a toxic relationship that may be familiar to any reader."