Superheroes and other ways to spend the night


Barbara Griest-Devora lives near downtown San Antonio, Texas, with her husband and two children. She teaches English at Northwest Vista College. Her poems have appeared in The Ledge, Rhino, The Texas Observer, The Sycamore Review, Cider Press Review and other literary jornals.

Pecan Grove Press

Superheroes and other ways to spend the night
Barbara Griest-Devora


ISBN: 1-931247-10-2

"Barbara Greist-Devora's first collection of poems opens us wide and raw to this 'world of light / and heavy longing.' From the poignant lyricism of "Monogamy" and "In a Room Where You Are Staying for Only a Week" to the wry humor of 'Getting It" and the dark comedy of "Climbing Man," these captivating, haunting poems offer wisdom far beyond the hilarity of Greist-Devora's cast of superheroes, who are, of course, ourselves."

—Wendy Barker, author of Way of Whiteness


True Heroine Becomes Annoyed
at Being the Only Female Superhero

And who wouldn’t be, those square chins always poking
you in the head, impossibly large shoulders blocking
your view of everything you know to be feminine

and every waist in the room smaller than your own.
On her uniform, she has the INE in
HeroINE blown up to twice the normal size

so there’s no mistake, grows her hair extra long
and picks out a scalloped cape. She wants
patent leather boots that exude “female” down

to their spiked heels and sticks out her breasts
for no reason but to point out she has them.
It’s way past time to hire more girls for this gig

but all she can find are mothers with diaper bags
and business girls with clunky heels.
It’s that she hates to be a token anything, wants

to teach these heroes a thing or two about women
that they never even saw coming and when it’s there,
they’ll be feverish and undecided. It’s always the same:

after flying practice, she cleans up alone in showers
decidedly inferior, misses out on the ribbing and slapping
of backs. It was enough to make a heroine go mortal.

But you never knew: maybe one day, she’d join them
in these showers, watch as the water beaded and ran
down legs, as soap foamed down skin, slid

down elbows. No one would have to notice:
she’d hide in a corner so dark God hardly knows,
keep her hands and slender fingers to herself.

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Most recent revision
November 11, 2003

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