Second Anniversary

Mourning after Murders

For the murdered at Pulse, Orlando 6/12/2016

I knew I was changed
when memories began pouring
over the disquiet and despair
tempering and cleansing me
into a dwindling bar of soap, shapeless as tallow
dissolved in a split stream reflection
reminding me that I was,

No, I am, queer
and, to my utter consternation,
(lost as I had been in hibernation)
still in need of some sort
of caress, some clemency
from privation, a sudden urge
for intimacy, for nuptials,
for the bonds of kinship—
to offset the horror.

The calloused pressure points on my soles
that once evoked tears were roiling again,
letting free sobs that embraced both loss
and longing. Don’t leave me. Please,
don’t leave me like this.

I even dreamt that my mother birthed
again, gave me a little sister to cherish,
and flayed my flesh, now unfastened,
to sprout this repatriation.


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