AT the queer karaoke bar

We say older queer couples

are “#goals,”

and watch them dance,

longing for a hand like that

in out own

And looks that gentle 

under harsh neon lights 

and for just a moment,

we think the future is possible 

and we go in the bathroom 

to check out our reflection in the mirror

because we can finally imagine 

crows feet, laugh lines,  and grey hairs at our temples

and not just a suicide in a closet

or a beating in a cornfield 

queer phototropism

when i stroke your face,
petals blossom from my fingers

we bloom
into a garden of violets and lilacs

our breath whispers into the meadows
of our intertwined bodies

causing every stem to sway, bend
and braid with one another

Why I can’t shuffle cards

I am sitting on your living room floor,
watching you try to teach me
how to fold my fingers around a deck of cards to shuffle them
the way you learned how in eighth-grade choir class,
but I keep getting distracted by how the light
folds around your face and
the way your smile makes my heart ache
in the best kind of way
so each time I try, the cards spill out
from my hands like a tarot deck gone rogue
with frustration at its user ignoring all the signs
it’s been giving because it’s ready for me to,
as that crab in the mermaid movie says,
kiss the girl and stop stalling.
but I can’t stop watching you grin
and can’t stop listening to you laugh
long enough to bridge the space between us
and do so, so I’ll keep playing with cards
and throwing them across the floor
as long as you will keep trying to teach me
so that I can keep watching you

Lesbians in The South Can Only Love at Night

In the stickiness of the Texas summer,
I lick a bead of sweat
from your greasy, salty flesh,
as the thunder cracks beyond the horizon
I follow the path the sweat would have rolled
down your chest and abdomen,
reveling in the shiver of your skin
and the quaking of your limbs,
as the lightning flashes,
obscuring the moonlight,
in favor of, for a brief moment,
illuminating our bodies
dripping from the humidity,
melting into one another
before surrendering our images
back to the fading dusk.

 

Originally published Sept. 2016 in CNCPT / LSBN