“A Cocky Poem” by Brittany Hause

Brittany Hause


It’s settled, yes? Now we can put the whole colossal cock
up well behind us, relegate #cock
ygate to the footnotes of social media and of memory, uncock
the loaded thinkpieces we’d readied to defend our right to tell our cock
& bull stories in whatever words we choose, discuss some other topic over cock
tails at book club, return to following the shuttlecock
flight of news from Washington to the exclusion of all else. This cock

eyed world seems cockeyeder than ever, lately, events unfolding with a Hitchcock
ian instinct for the freakishly surreal, stagey cock
fights between celebrities and blundering yet cock
sure politicians splashed across front pages while hate groups breed like cock
roaches in shamelessly broad daylight. Our plane’s been hijacked, there’s a fire in the cock
pit, the flight crew’s lying coldcock
ed in the aisles, and even so some passengers are screaming like crazed cock

atoos about the coffee running dry. Small wonder we took seriously such cock
amamie nonsense—that’s poppycock
for readers who don’t speak old Tinseltown—as this copyright (or “cock
yright,” ha-ha … forgive me) lawsuit; recent winds of change have set the weathercock
to spinning round so fast that merely watching dizzies us. Still: a relief this cock
atrice, for one, seems to have breathed its final, foul cock

If you contest the verdict, there are words for folks like you.

from Poets Respond


Brittany Hause: “This was written on hearing the very welcome news that an author’s recent infamous attempt to legally limit use of the word ‘cocky’ in romance novel titles to her own work in exclusivity has finally been laid to rest. #Cockygate, as the litigation surrounding other authors’ use of the contested word was referred to online, seemed to be on the verge of dying an ignoble death on a few occasions, but was only publicly confirmed deceased by all parties involved last week. The verdict: romance authors can legally use the word “cocky” in their titles all they please. Since the case was viewed by many layman onlookers as setting a precedent for copyright lawsuits, this outcome will hopefully discourage further attempts to copyright similarly common words.” (web)

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