Saturday, May 01, 2010

The Tattooed Poets Project: Cody Todd

Yes, it's May, but we have two more days of the Tattooed Poets Project before we're done for the year.

When asked to submit a poem, Cody Todd said, referring to the tattoo he submitted (on Tattoosday, here):

"Sadly, I don't have any noir poems. I'd love one to explore a relationship between noir and poetry, even though I doubt it is possible. The early work of Larry Levis is noir-ish (e.g. "L.A. Loiterings" or "Fish") but I don't think it was his conceit to explore that relationship, even if it exists. The work of Bukowski, voluminous as it may be, comes from a kind of noir persona that the poet created for himself, but again, not really an attempt to explore the poetics, if any exist, of noir. I do have a weird poem here that I wrote in a woman's persona, and she came to me one night as a rather desperate and dark soul."


Portrait of child swinging on an old tire, tied to a tree. Portrait

of man hammering a stake into the earth. Portrait of wedding:

the space-eyes of everyone, happy as hell. Welcome to hell. Oh

portraits ringing in our memories like unanswerable telephones

in abandoned offices. Hello portrait, it’s me. I’m alone and still

thinking about you, portrait. Getting drunk alone. Lipstick has

to be refreshed after each glass. Don’t leave me alone, portrait.

I am almost dead, almost smoking another night away, almost

admiring the stars, wanting to eat the their own cold smiles.


Cody Todd is the author of the chapbook, To Frankenstein, My Father (2007, Proem Press). His poems have appeared in Hunger Mountain, Salt Hill and are forthcoming in Lake Effect, The Pinch, Specs Journal and Denver Quarterly. He received an MFA from Western Michigan University and is currently a Virginia Middleton Fellow in the PhD program in English-Literature/Creative Writing at the University of Southern California. He is the Managing Editor and co-creator of the poetry journal, The Offending Adam (

Thanks to Cody Todd for particpating in another edition of The Tattooed Poets Project!

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