Susan McCaslin | Fort Langley, BC | LCP member since 1985

Demeter Tries to Adopt Britney Spears

Britney, America’s erstwhile darling
at twelve, now fodder for YouTube,
her half-life held in Pepsi ads.

Cornered by paparazzi, she swings
her bared bum out of cars
too late to avoid the crotch shot.

“Hit me baby one more time”
with your cameras
on route to the custody trial,
coon-ringed eyes veering away.

Too soon modified, mortified,
commoditized, too soon married,
lean, a fatty chomped by the machine,
you, no heavier than Venus in her prime,
you, of the infatuating perfumes
no one will buy.

They have ripped you apart like Orpheus
and your stripped fragments fly all over the web
where your shaven head still goes on singing.

So I’m swooping in for an aerial pickup,
nabbing you by taxi,
smuggling you out of rehab
for Paris, with or without the kids,
where we’ll dance on Marc Chagall’s ceilings
and I’ll introduce you to his mystic bride,
and the fiercely flying animals

and you can lie on the beach with Reubens,
where the fans who gobbled you up like candy
can never mock you again
and you will be calmed,
if not wholly convinced,
of your own hidden wholeness.

* * *

Poem to be published in Demeter Goes Skydiving (University of Alberta Press, April 2011).

* * *
Susan McCaslin
is a Canadian poet, author of eleven volumes of poetry, including her most recent, Demeter Goes Skydiving (University of Alberta Press, 2011).  She has edited two anthologies of poetry and is on the editorial board of Event: the Douglas College Review.  Susan lives in Fort Langley, British Columbia with her husband and an Australian Shepherd.

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9 Responses to Susan McCaslin | Fort Langley, BC | LCP member since 1985

  1. Penn Kemp says:

    Can’t wait to read with Susan in Hamilton and London June 5, 6 and 7th! She’ll be reading from Demeter Goes Skydiving! With poems like these, we’ll have a hoot!

  2. Hi Susan, we spent 7 weeks in Europe last year and a month just now in France and Spain…One thing we noticed, the youth there wasn’t into violince, the hashish shops were legal in Madrid, but the youth perferred to just socialize at resturants! ..rap music isn’t big there, nor tattoos, (I really don’t mind a hair of it, but that is all), so less aggression towards women in music is important and the hate towards everything isn’t in Paris or Madid, just the opposite!…Paris was cold, but so feminine!…Lovers walking at night, no fear for abuse on our walks late in the evenings!…So yes, send them(the young) off to that part of Europe for an experience of their lifes!..Love..Peter

  3. Vivienne Grace says:

    I love the the vibrancy and vigour and compassion of your poem
    It makes me think of the women in Toronto who organized a Slut Walk in response to a man who raped a woman and was given house arrest because the woman was deemed to have dressed provocatively!!!
    Looking forward to your launch on May 7th and hearing more of your feminine wisdom

  4. Ray McGinnis says:

    Very hopeful – that Britney could, with the aid of Demeter, discover her own hidden wholeness. Looking forward to this new collection of poems!

  5. Leslie Timmins says:

    Demeter embraces Britney- and not for money! And even if Britney can’t yet see the ‘fierce flying animals,’ there are now more of us who wish she could.

  6. Meg Watson says:

    A very powerful imploring for a spirit driven rescue.

  7. Kate Braid says:

    How grounding to be reminded so lightheartedly that what is “new” isn’t new at all – that we have a deeply embedded history that goes back and back before the written word, reminding us of what’s important – of compassion and caring. Thanks, Susan!

  8. Kim Goldberg says:

    Wonderful, Susan! Thanks for sharing.

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