View Archives by:


The Fine Art of Pedestal Construction

Meghan Punschke

It will start with a compliment.   No.
Maybe it will start with a miasmic imprint.
Something missing from childhood perhaps,
but more likely an egotistical lapse— The
mere trip to the mirror, you will fail to see.

In a moment, the cancerous perception
that control is acquired will cause you to throw
all your inadequacies into a bucket. These
you will be required to voraciously mix into
the mortar that will bind your perfect pedestal.

The key is to use a hollow wood, like
a balsam or a cedar. Such timber can withstand
the outward strain that will accompany the
preliminary procedures. (They are also fragrant
enough to cover up the stench of the shit you will

pack deep into its core.) Of course, the next
step will be to learn how to justify the structure.
Because everything will be a reflection of how
reliable your preferred parry can be. With a
steady base, you will then be able to concentrate

on the needs of your candidate. You will swiftly
toss your own beliefs, in exchange for whatever
they say. And you may even begin to see intrinsic
connections everyday— Where before there was
a hollow void, you will now find quixotic peace.

You will begin to spend a substantial amount
of time lying. This will ensure that he/she
thinks you/me odd, better, different, incapable,
capable, adorable, elegant, intrinsic, mystic,
affluent, captive… captive of their great glory.

But whatever attribute you choose to convey,
you will have to remind yourself that you will
never be more so than they. Your goal will be
to simply lose yourself in their splendor. But
you must reckon that it cannot last forever.

Eventually, Ego will become as tender as a
tongue, causing an unfortunate emotional flood.
And, your pedestal will begin to bow and shirk—
The soaked wood will begin to swell and burst
like an uncut frank in a microwave.

And as you scramble to pick up the ineffectual
shards, your candidate will be quickly plummeting
to a perceptive death. Yet, the inescapable truth will
remain: It is your fault for precariously propping
him/her up like that dumb egg on that high wall.

Meghan Punschke

Read Bio

Author Discusses Poems