Poems from BABY, I DON'T CARE

Chelsey Minnis


This is a matter of life or death, probably death.
Your bullet is very close to my heart.
You're way off base, darling.
Let's put some ice on our fingers.
By ice, I mean diamonds.


You know how I am.
Oysters for lunch, dinner and breakfast.
A broken heart is not for me.
Now, don't I want some mink?
Don’t tell me you're a bloody communist!


When you say it with feeling, then you're wonderful.
Going out of my mind wouldn't be hard.
You need to be kicked under the table.
Let's go sell another polo pony.
I'm worn my diamonds down to the bone, darling.


I'm afraid someone's not going to give me my favorite thing!
Then I would bite their head or face.
This could be a long turnaround.
Baby, don't be gruesome!
I only wanted one stuffed grizzly bear in my study, not two.


I like to scream in a satin bed
and get a baby bunny as a present.
I can't stop thinking of myself and what might be to my own advantage!
For example, I love to go to bed sober
which means I have to start drinking early.


Don't keep saying "down the hatch" all night long.
Something matters but what is it?
A window with a very long fall underneath?
One time, someone refused to give me a pink topaz and I fainted.
Let me be the first to pour your tears down the drain.



Am I laughing?
On the contrary.
Please let me think of the right self-reprimands.
I assure you, this will be a conventional poem.
Now let me introduce you to a hungry tigress, me.


What do you want with me?
I'm just a dirty little shoplifter.
I'm like a woman in a sequined gown in a dark cave.
Can you tell me I'm worse than others?
Ok, yes, I'm worse than others, but can you say I'm the worst of all?


Now, let's be reasonable with ourselves.
If you show me a man in a turtleneck sweater on the beach
then that is beyond my resistance.
If you show me a liquor cart on wheels,
I will just climb on.


Who am I?
Someone who kisses your shoulder when they're not supposed to.
I'm wearing high heels by the pool so that makes everything OK.
Now don't be charming, darling.
There could be a lot of smashed vases in our future.


What should I do? Mind my manners?
I'm the type of person to lose an emerald ring.
I might drop it in my champagne and drink it.
How can I be such a swine?
Oh, darling. I hate to be thirsty.


Let's have a drink, medicinally.
I'll stand on the couch and introduce myself.
This isn't a drink; it's pure leopard sweat!
You shouldn't be allowed to run around with me.
I'll only give you a good time.



Let's settle our accounts.
Let's conduct our interviews from the bathtub.
Now hand me my robe.
There's a pretty good chance I love you,
but I'll have to take it up with my board of directors.


What in the name of heaven can they do?
The contract's signed.
Anyway, I like to be pawed over.
I believe in keeping up your standards at night.
Don't be such a sterling character, darling.


There are a lot of compliments lying around.
Why don't you give me some?
You're the kind of darling I hate.
Now let's get ritzy.
I'm a pair of diamond earrings away from sleeping with you.


I just want to get a smell of the money.
I'm fed up with this kind of living.
Will you help me with the zipper, darling?
I never can get a zipper to close.
I think that's good business.


I'm the kind of person who breaks heirloom ashtrays
I'm the kind who whirls a jumbo globe.
Have I said something awful? Why not?
I like it when I have a bad idea.
Why don't you make me your beneficiary, darling?


Chelsey Minnis received a BA in English from the University of Colorado at Boulder and an MFA from the University of Iowa Writer's Workshop in poetry. Her first book of poems, Zirconia won the 2001 Alberta Prize. Also published: BAD BAD (Fence, 2007), Poemland (Wave, 2009), and Baby, I Don’t Care (Wave, 2018).