Amy Gerstler is a writer of poetry and nonfiction who lives in Los Angeles. Medicine, her most recent book of poems, was published by Penguin Putnam in 2000. Her previous books include Crown of Weeds, Nerve Storm, and Bitter Angel. She teaches in the Bennington Writing Seminars program at Bennington College in Vermont, and at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California.

Fuck You Poem # 45

Fuck you in slang and conventional English.

Fuck you in lost and neglected lingoes.

Fuck you hungry and sated; faded, pock marked and defaced.

Fuck you with orange rind, fennel and anchovy paste.

Fuck you with rosemary and thyme, and fried green olives on the side.

Fuck you humidly and icily.

Fuck you farsightedly and blindly.

Fuck you nude and draped in stolen finery.


Fuck you while cells divide wildly and birds trill.

Thank you for barring me from his bedside while he was ill.

Fuck you puce and chartreuse.

Fuck you postmodern and prehistoric.

Fuck you under the influence of opium, codeine, laudanum and paregoric.

Fuck every real and imagined country you fancied yourself princess of.

Fuck you on feast days and fast days, below and above.

Fuck you sleepless and shaking for nineteen nights running.

Fuck you ugly and fuck you stunning.


Fuck you shipwrecked on the barren island of your bed.  

Fuck you marching in lockstep in the ranks of the dead.

Fuck you at low and high tide.

And fuck you astride

                                anyone who has the bad luck to fuck you, in dank hallways,    

     bathrooms, or kitchens.

Fuck you in gasps and whispered benedictions.


And fuck these curses, however heartfelt and true,

that bind me, till I forgive you, to you.