Warning: Parameter 1 to wp_default_scripts() expected to be a reference, value given in /homepages/9/d675280781/htdocs/public_html/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 579

Warning: Parameter 1 to wp_default_styles() expected to be a reference, value given in /homepages/9/d675280781/htdocs/public_html/wp-includes/plugin.php on line 579
John Mortara | Electric Cereal

Author: John Mortara

John Mortara is the editor of Voicemail Poems. Their writing has been published in Big Lucks, The Bohemyth, and Potluck Mag. They can also be found on Twitter.

bagel city

we say we’re going to build the perfect city. one filled with our favorite people and our favorite bagel places and our favorite playgrounds and our favorite streets. like we could cobble together all the great things and coincidently excise all the bad. i tell you it must be warm – but not too warm. it’s gotta be cool – but like – figuratively. soft all around. i’d prefer a river running through the downtown center and you’d like a year-long concert in the park and also a block party every couple of feet and we agree. how can we love so many people all in the same place if there is no music. we chuckle over beer and bike rides knowing that sooner or later my heart is going to hurt even more than when you found me. there will be a hidden trail in the woods tucked inside of bagel city where you and i can go to hurt. you can walk beside me while i hurt and it will be nice to know you are there. i would do the same for you. like how you can feel the heat of a car even when it’s no longer running. i stand here now next to someone’s car. i am warmed by it even though it could kill me. it won’t. i will pick a ripe avocado and spread it all over the parts of bagel city that are literally made of out bagel and all the crosswalk signals will be perfectly timed in bagel city. i will have plenty of time for everybody i love in bagel city. just like you waking up next to me. like you high-fiving me when the sun comes up. you open my bedroom door and out pour all the other people that love me just as much as you do – but like – different. we ride down the empty road all no-hands and cheering. i point out all the places i’ve cried since august almost proud. you say that you can relate and
i believe you. that you must have needed to cry for months but couldn’t. it took being hit by a careless driver last weekend to knock the salt out of you. wow. i guess this is what it’s like to exist. things like that can feel so perfectly horrible and so stupidly necessary.


i came here for tuesday and tuesday is for dance. sometimes i run out of things to say and i have to do it in dance. yesterday was monday when i ran out of dance. i slept in a bed made of all the haircolors you’ve had since we kissed on that long ago tuesday.
i woke on tuesday with more dance than ever before. i danced around an oaktree screaming TUESDAAY! i held hands with tuesday while running towards morning. tuesday cuddles me and tells me beautiful exactly how you tell me beautiful. tuesday might as well be you the way it makes me burst into hilarious little stars. tuesday might as well be the both of us the way it shines like a heart that is kicking butt at being a heart. tuesday is a heart that recently went ‘pro.’ i am grateful that the fame and praise is not going to tuesday’s head. i shook hands with tuesday in a cute and unnecessary way knowing how we just smooched each other into adorable oblivion. in my humble opinion there should be more tuesdays that involve you curled up into me i’m just saying. there should be more tuesdays where i learn to stop worrying and love the sun. because it’s above you too. i’m bouncing this poem off tuesday sun in such a way that it lands in your lap saying: it’s tuesday. i love you. it’s not going to be ok because it is ok. let every tuesday be a reminder.

the bullshit

the bullshit wants to know if you have change for a dollar. the bullshit wants to know if you have a spare cigarette. the bullshit wants you to sign this petition. the bullshit has a problem with the bullshit’s partner and the argument is so loud that you can hear the bullshit through your earbuds. you vacate the premises but the bullshit is everywhere. the bullshit sneaks up on you and tickles you and you really wish the bullshit wouldn’t do that but the bullshit does it anyway. every single time. the bullshit is playing in every theatre. the bullshit is actually a sequel to a long line of films also called the bullshit. no one bothered to give the bullshit a number or a different title because no one cares. the bullshit is outraged about something on twitter and wants you to help trend it. the bullshit tags you on facebook and for some reason the option to un-tag yourself from the bullshit is oddly missing. you beg the bullshit to stop but the bullshit is training for a marathon. the bullshit went to work today and something happened to the bullshit. the bullshit is doing a cleanse but keeps coming down with the bullshit. the bullshit wants to know what book you’re reading and if you have ever read another completely unrelated book. the bullshit wants to know your major and how you could ever make a living with it. the bullshit wants to know what your tattoos mean. the bullshit knows a total of five jokes. the bullshit only ever tells one of them. the bullshit wishes america would just WAKE UP ALREADY. the bullshit has zero intimate knowledge of that thing but can confidently speak on it at length. the bullshit needs to keep its eyes up here buddy. the bullshit just had a baby and the baby is also training for a marathon. the bullshit is forwarding this email to you because the bullshit thinks you might just love it.

my phone’s about to die but i love you

happy birthday mason jar full of anxious muttering. happy birthday the world is burning. happy birthday carrying a potted plant around town looking like someone
i would kiss. happy birthday ducking into an alley and praying you didn’t see me. happy birthday crawling on all fours across the crosswalk just for fun. happy birthday irrational fear of public perspiration. happy birthday ‘SORRY! the game of sweet revenge.’ happy birthday sick cloud. happy birthday vague sense of longing. heyyyy! empty bag of potato chips! happy birthday! happy birthday sober birthday party. are you strategically moving around the bar to remain in my line of sight or am i just crazy happy birthday. happy birthday i decided to walk back from forever to new jersey. happy birthday interesting spot in the woods i’ve been meaning to investigate. happy birthday birthday suit. this dysphoria is killing me happy birthday. feliz cumpleaños mass extinction event. bon anniversaire randomly-intersecting love triangles. happy birthday this dull headache i just became friends with and nicknamed ‘carl.’ happy birthday email diatribe about labeling food in the breakroom. happy birthday one gas price if you pay credit and another cheaper gas price if you pay cash. happy birthday listicle about famous people in history that’s like 90% men so UGH but also happy birthday. happy birthday april 10, 2014. the daytime moon over the hills makes me want to live and die simultaneously. happy birthday.

today i am coming out as a person that is capable of large amounts of love for other persons

let’s see how far our hearts can go

i’ll take my heart out first

here it is!

wow! a heart!

let’s see how far we can make this thing go now

let’s take this box i got from amazon because recycling

let’s put my heart in a box and tie it to a kite

wow! look at how far my heart is going

let’s pull it down

let’s mail it to people with a note that says

i am coming out as a person that is capable of large amounts of love for other persons, pass it on

let’s see how many people can give my heart to people

when they receive my heart i want them to kiss it and say ‘wow you are so right’

i want you to receive it on the opposite end of america exactly where my heart started

i want you to gently tug on my heart like a piece of chewing gum made out of love

tie one end of my heart to the telephone pole i kissed you against the first time we met

tug on the other end and pull my heart across new jersey yelling ‘wow! look at how far this heart can go! it’s incredibly versatile and elastic and it doesn’t seem to be getting any thinner!’

i want you to keep walking until you arrive in kansas where i am holding your heart because you mailed it to me earlier

i am holding your heart after stretching it from san francisco all the way over to kansas to meet you at the center of america and we are like ‘wow! these hearts! they are defying all logic with how strong they are!’

i want you to come from illinois

i want you to come from carolina

i want you to come from montana

i want you to come from texas

i want you to come from washington

i want you to come from maine

i want you to come from florida

i want you to kiss me if you want to

i want a whole mess of all of us touching our endless hearts to each other and tying them into a knot at the center of america all tied up like a package we are mailing to the moon which really is kindof endless when it comes to receiving love

the moon is so good at receiving love i am always astounded

i will stand on the giant knot we tied out of all our hearts and everyone i have ever loved (even a little) will kiss me all over and hold me down and then let go and then i will fly to the moon to give it love too

today i will be coming out to an entire world of people about how much i love them entirely

i am officially out of the ‘not loving people’ closet

it was dark in there holy crud it was so dark

tomorrow i am officially coming out as someone who lives on the moon and loves the whole world from really far away and that’s ok too

i don’t even really need the stretched-out still-beating heart i left behind to do all this loving

that’s how much better it gets.


VZW FREE MSG: soon you and everyone you have ever loved will be dead

VZW FREE MSG: you aren’t over your text message limit but you are certainly over your vapid bullshit limit

VZW FREE MSG: soon your children will blame you for the entire world drowning

VZW FREE MSG: we are giggling at your dick pix

VZW FREE MSG: booty calls count double against your minutes / well / they aren’t even really your minutes per say / you share with your mom

VZW FREE MSG: go outside

VZW FREE MSG: it’s contagious

VZW FREE MSG: every time he reads your texts he laughs and shows it to his friend

VZW FREE MSG: dunk your head into the eternal fire

VZW FREE MSG: those sounds in the walls aren’t real

VZW FREE MSG: you are a skeleton with meat on it

VZW FREE MSG: we don’t know who’s blood it is either

VZW FREE MSG: the world burns. can you hear me now?

VZW FREE MSG: it’s not true that ‘we all die alone.’ sometimes we die together. screaming.


VZW FREE MSG: no really, maybe you should stop drinking for a little while

VZW FREE MSG: this message isn’t actually free, we built the operations cost into your bill lol

VZW FREE MSG: you are hotter than the surface of the sun / and just as gaseous

VZW FREE MSG: nope, just us again

VZW FREE MSG: do you ever feel like your skin is screaming?

unicorn bitch

i am the rarest unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
my love is valuable and you can’t afford me

i am the most elusive unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
you will probably beg some wizard to help you cast your eyes on me
but i am the most mysterious and secretive unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
you will only see me if i let you see me

i am the rarest unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
there is no other unicorn bitch that could ever replace me
i know what you are trying to pull
trying to pass narwhal horns off to travelers like you could ever catch me
i am the most-often-imitated-but-never-duplicated unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy

i am the most endless time-traveling unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
i’m sorry but you will perish before you tame me
i am immortality and legend and i am not flesh but diamond
when you wake from glowing dreams of me
people will think you are crazy
because i am the rarest unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
and this is a foolish world full of foolish men
putting me on their coat of arms like they know me

i am the sexiest unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
i make love only to the earth
and when i come
i come rainbows
and wherever the rainbows land
BOOM 10,000-year-old forests filled with happy woodland creatures

i am the most monumental colossal unfathomable unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
if you zoom out far enough each of your constellations
is actually part of a larger constellation
which is of course shaped exactly like me

i am the rarest unicorn bitch this side of the galaxy
my love is valuable and none of you
none of you
could ever afford me