Poetry: My Husband Questions the South Carolina Foster Care Adoption Application

Stockton-Application-copy2

 

Would you consider a firestarter?
An epileptic with ADHD?
Does he have other conditions?
Cerebral palsy, deafness, illiteracy,
malnutrition, lice, atrophy,
blindness? What about puberty?
Are you a smoker? A drinker?
Did your parents spank you?
Did your therapist spank you?
What do you know about trauma?
Can we see your bedroom?
Can you open the nightstand?
Why do your sheets smell like candy?
Are you willing to redecorate?
To relocate? In two sentences,
tell us about your childhood.
Was it very good? How do you manage
anger? Are you currently in a long-term
relationship recognized by the State
of South Carolina? Thank you
for applying. Can you start a fire?


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About the Poet:
Will Stockton holds a PhD from Indiana University and teaches English at Clemson University. He writes books and essays about how people in the Renaissance had sex, and poetry about how modern people do. With D Gilson, he is the author of Crush (Punctum Books) and Gay Boys Write Straight Porn (Sibling Rivalry Press). His poems have appeared in journals including Assaracus, Bloom, Fourth River, PANK, and Weave.

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About the Visual Artist:
Eric Pankey is an award-winning author of ten collections of poetry, most recently Dismantling the Angel. Pankey’s writing has appeared in journals including The New Yorker, The American Poetry Review, The Paris Review, The Iowa Review, Sequestrum, The Yale Review, and others. His new book, Crow-Work is forthcoming in 2015. Pankey is Heritage Chair in Writing at George Mason University.