Saturday, January 19, 2013


(Art By McFreshCreates)

He tells every girl she’s beautiful:
The brother in the letterman jacket,
at the door of the house party,
with penetrating brown eyes
and perfect teeth.

He greets each entrance as if she’s special.

We stand in line,
blocking the cold with our drunkenness,
my watery eyes trembling
at his lips, pursed with that B-word.


How much would you like to bet that he’ll skip me?

Slapped into skinny jeans,
sweaty palms rubbing into them
I am all too nervous at what comes easily for most girls.

Defense mechanism,
Smart phone texting,
I dare all the men, who want to dance, with an angry stare. 

Why is it so hard to be female?

Mama spoke of crossed legs,
covering your mouth,
learning to cook and cleaning your house,
speak when spoken to, and be quiet as a mouse.

But I’m loud,
the tomboy inside of me refusing to deteriorate.

My debutant ball was on a dark stage,
clenching a microphone between my teeth.

Sweet thirteens in the shape of bruised lips 
and shards of broken glass.

Breaking the bottle over my head,
unconscious to the thrusts,
seemed the only way he’d be allowed on top of me.

So we danced,
I’ve been doing the two-step ever since.
Life and I, playing track and field.
I chased dreams. Still do.
Hurdles in the forms of boys and girls
who couldn’t understand why metaphors
and similes interested me more than the sandbox.

I built my castle,
like Mecca

Studying the Quran
on club nights,
a fiend for religion.

Women cloaked in
forgotten cloth,
judgment by personality alone.

Wrote love letters like Wordsworth and Giovanni.

Embraced spectrum like Malcolm on a soapbox.

I learned bachata,
Marley, and the bible simultaneously.
Cuban and Jamaican running through my veins.

You must be out of your rass mind to tell me that I’m not a woman,
nothing is truer.


I’m a warrior of sun gods
shedding light on life//
like the moon forgot tonight//
analogies alike//

You and I, trick,
are not the same//
nor will we ever be

You neglect to see me,
like slow eye//

No, I//

May not know how to dub,
turn tricks with my tongue,
or have the nickname
of sponge, leech,
whatever the slackers’ parents call them behind their backs.


I am female.
See me spit
Brooklyn on my heart,
burden on my back,
gapped teeth,
and thick thighs w/ slapped on skinny jeans.

Drunken with dreams. 

My sweaty palms greet his.

He tells me I’m beautiful too, but you should already know… that I know this.