Month: March 2017

Banana Bread

The bananas you bought when you left were ready to be bread before your return. I want to bake them for you, large loaves the size of a lap dog, miniature ones you could eat like a summer pear. The clocks in this kitchen make me anxious—their red tongues clicking at my waiting. The noon church bell shaking its head at my wine rituals. The way I pop the cork when I hear what I want to be your keys rattling at the door. Kitchen speckled with the shedding of a cork shoved back into a bottle too many...

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It Is the Worst Nightmare

At the museum café we read every item on the menu before ordering the buffalo chili and cornbread with a pat of butter. The Native Americans hunted buffalo and that is why the chili is the best choice. We have walked through broad rooms of artwork by the Cherokee and Chippewa, the Sioux and Blackfeet tribes, and of course by the Caucasians, who were romanced by the natives atop their stallions, but not enough to treat them like brothers. The museum tells the story of a decimation. This is the worst nightmare: Wading through black viscous liquid, almost thick...

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How to Be Queer in a Small, Southern Town

1. Don’t talk about it. Even if people were to listen, if they were really listening, they would ask why? Why would you want this? Why would you want to be anything other than normal? Why would you want to anger God this way? You know he smites those who waste their own seed? You know he smites those who do such an evil thing (as be anything other than normal, male, or darker than pale)? You will likely hear these things anyway. But, the reply will be instant. In the space between your syllables, they won’t hear or...

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Finding Adam

When I met Adam, I was in bed with my boyfriend. Tommy and I watched a Judd Apatow movie—those days it was always a Judd Apatow movie, a packed bong, a nuked Domino’s pizza—and Adam walked in shirtless, exposing a tribal tattoo of a tribe to which he didn’t belong. He’d just finished moving his things into our spare bedroom, and he had something important to tell us. He rolled the desk chair to our bedside and straddled it, asked could we turn down the television volume? “I have mad bull disease,” he said. In cattle, mad cow disease...

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Skincoat

You feel your skin on you, separate. Your skin, an inheritance. Your skin, worn over your bones like papier-mâché. Worn out from self-abuse, overuse, overexposure. Worn out in public, over and over again. Your skin, a hand-me-down coat you have long grown out of. Snug around your lungs, coming apart at the seams. You touch at your back and neck, longing for a zipper. Some sort of grinding-teeth mechanism interlaced together, able to be unzipped, slipped off and discarded like so many articles of clothing you sometimes find by the wayside of a swimming pool or half-buried at the...

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