Watching Porn by Nikki Wallschlaeger

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Watching Porn

I rarely watch porn, most of it is boring,
but today I am bored and kinda horny, 
moth-eaten and solicitous in a new robe,
a woman is sufficiently enjoying herself,
she’s watching herself enjoying herself,
what they’re doing when they have time, 
or make the time, oxidized, relished, bodies 
are beautiful, so is pleasure, I want pleasure,
I’m here with my insecurities and boredom,
watching tutorials on contouring the body
around people and making myself enjoy it,
I’m enjoying people and their expert pleasure,
when I’m done I feel like I punched out at work,
having fucked off all day at jobs paying nothing,
needing content to fill my loneliness and time, 
for work not to be boring, enjoy myself alone
in my loneliness, watching across the rooms, 
what I look like experiencing pleasure or loss,
needing pleasure began after my first orgasm,
second time I had sex, looking for it everywhere,
looking for it in places that didn’t make any sense,
there were orders to be filled, a need for pleasure,
filled it as a girl learning on the job, girls are experts
at contouring mistakes, today is a mental health day, 
watching videos on how to fuck and maintain desire,
how to make mouths look like they produce desire,
today I’m not at work kissing ass for employment,
I remember a few times when kissing wasn’t boring, 
making out with my boyfriend for hours in the park,
we kissed for hours for a year before we had sex,
after we had sex we forgot how to kiss for hours,
we fucked all the time, spring, summer, winter, fall, 
before and after school, I had a busier sex life than
my friends’ mothers, we were adults in after school
fast food jobs filling orders, I got bored, quit my job, 
fucked guys who didn’t kiss me at all or wouldn’t 
remember if they had.


Nikki Wallschlaeger’s work has been featured in The Nation, Brick, American Poetry Review, Witness, Kenyon Review, POETRY, and others. She is the author of the full-length collections Houses (Horseless Press 2015)  and Crawlspace (Bloof 2017) as well as the graphic book I Hate Telling You How I Really Feel (2019) from Bloof Books. She is also the author of an artist book called “Operation USA” through the Baltimore based book arts group Container, a project acquired by Woodland Pattern Book Center in Milwaukee. Her third collection, Waterbaby, is forthcoming from Copper Canyon Press in 2021.

Basia Kurlender is a graphic designer, illustrator, t-shirt collector, lifelong New Yorker, friend to dogs, successful matchmaker, BFA recipient (Pratt ‘19), voice memo demo fanatic, recovering sign painter, Aquarius, skater, good driver, basement show attendee, jeans re-wearer, pickle maker, notorious one minute songwriter, loyal Craigslist missed connections reader, Simon & Garfunkel superfan, website owner (, instagram user (@bshawww), etc.