Joni Wallace

Joni Wallace

Joni Wallace received her MFA from the University of Montana. She is the author of Blinking Ephemeral Valentine (Four Way Books, 2011), selected by Mary Jo Bang for the 2009 Levis Prize, and a chapbook titled Redshift (Kore Press, 2001). Her recent work appears in Boston Review, Conduit, Sonora Review, The Drunken Boat, The Volta, and West Branch Wired. She currently lives and works in Tucson, Arizona.


Pox on the living.

Movie prize of some long

ago actress, not me,

and she shall witness

our breaths fly out

in a minor scene,

waxshine of stiletto heels,

fur voltage, radiant

ringlets ringed in smoke,

do you have a light?

Enter Mister Satie

and his cupful of sloe,

enter a room where I lose

you to the plink

of a piano player,

a bar sign scintillating

boite de jazz /

tilt view almost missed

as dusk steels the set

set into blankness,

my exquisite wound.

This the part where the credits roll:

hand of glances,


Please place your headphones in the seatback in front of you.

Please exit through the signs marked EXIT.

Step out onto the boulevard.

It could be this or any city.


From Blinking Ephemeral Valentine (Four Way Books, 2011).

Arizona Board of Regents