Copyright © 2012 Pirene's Fountain.


All Rights Reserved.

Kateema Lee is a Washington, D.C. native. Her poetry has been published in print and in online literary journals. She is an associate editor for the Potomac Review. When she is not writing, she teaches composition, literature, and women’s studies courses.


In Utero: A Hitchcock Retrospective

Hysterically, these days, I dream of hysterectomies
and Freud’s hysterical hysteria,
every dream makes my womb ache;
is this what aging feels like?

In most dreams I’m sitting on Freud’s couch,
his spectacles reflect images of Hitchcock scenes:
Janet Leigh watches a uterus in her rearview mirror,
her white 57 sedan hurries down
a dusty highway, the pulpy mass passes by,
soon she loses sight…fade to black.

Perry Mason-- no Lars blinks from flash bulbs,
and Lisa tosses decaying ovaries to slow
the villain down. She had to get rid of them
because they were slowing her down.

Yes, my hysteria conjures up memories of movies
with blonde damsels in distress distressing,
dying on checkered floors, or looking
up “sinister” wooden stairs to see
their hetero hero trapped in utero at the top.

No birds in these dreams,
no Bodega Bay, just crop dusting uteri
dropping down, fallopian tubes extended like wings.

Yes, sometimes the dreams are beautiful,
but most times it’s splintered, fading,
worm-holed antiques in dark rooms
and Norman’s words of wisdom,
“We all go a little mad sometimes.”

Always, in the end, I am, you are,
we are “an illusion, a shell,”
an old woman in a dim, musty room
rocking in a chair.