January 31, 2013

Rhoda Janzen

THE MINNESOTA MULTIPHASIC
PERSONALITY INVENTORY

1943

What splendid chutzpah, what astounding grit!
Our pioneer of mental health designed
a test to tell the fit from the unfit!
It sicks refinement on the unrefined.
The mastermind would have my yes be yes
when I’d prefer a sliding scale to rhymes
of true or false—hard to know how to assess
Peculiar odors come to me at times,
or, Everything is turning out just as
the Old Testament prophets said it would
.
He must have gone home to his gin and jazz,
his wife still at the PTA, his mood
improving when he saw Consuela’s hips
swiveling the vacuum’s sweet apocalypse.

from Rattle #37, Summer 2012