by Heidi Czerwiec

I assume pork, blood sausage.
It’s an excuse to get disgusting.

Longline boning: it’s like
what’s in a corset,

these long strips that keep everything—
(I have bruises.)

Women pinched and tightly wound.
Like an Amazon, I’m built.

You don’t see there’s restraint;
people are very naughty things.

They ask me if it was good;
I tell them when it’s not.

I cause a ruckus.
I’m trying to learn my lesson.

SOURCE: “Christina Hendricks Isn’t All That Fussy,” Esquire (August 3, 2009).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I’ve long been fascinated with Christina Hendricks, who plays Joan on Mad Men: as that character, her luscious body is in constant friction with the constraints of those times, both of fashion and social expectations. I tried to convey that erotic tension through this erasure.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Heidi Czerwiec is the author of Self-Portrait as Bettie Page (Barefoot Muse) and has recent poems and translations appearing in storySouth, Able Muse, Crab Orchard Review, and Barrow Street. She teaches creative writing at the University of North Dakota. Visit her at