In Which Our Wants Are Worlds
We have a house in the suburbs & it is quietenough here to hear when flowers burst.When buds open their mouths to speak. It is spring.We have two kids & I stopped painting my nails.We have two prescription bottles of anti-depressants& your loneliness swallows them all one night.We have a roof that doesn’t leak & a Saturn Vueof mercury with squeaky brake pads.Every time we slow down it soundslike the car is warning. What small nag.Want. We speed up & our backs press flatagainst the seats. We speed up & want is the humof the engine, the street lamps blurringpast. We can’t move.We bought a vehicle of want.Our hearts rot oppressively in the trunk. You tattoo an arc of I am, I am, I am. Want under your left breast. You dye your hair pink. You have your mother’s smile & your father’s sense of humor. When he yells, your lips flare & sun-scorch the walls, radiating an attractive array of want. I am not a good Chinese boy. Your grandmother cries over dinner but you say you are very, very happy. I am eight & the boy I love lives in the attic. I am eight & covet my sister’s flower dress. No one tells me I can’t have the boy & the dress. My want lives in marigold fingertips. My want is the god of touch. My want petals in spring & blooms all summer.
Copyright © 2019 by Jasmine Reid
All rights reserved.
Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission.
Jasmine Reid is a twice trans poet-child of flowers. A 2018 Poets House Fellow and MFA candidate at Cornell University, her work has been published or is forthcoming in Muzzle Magazine, Yemassee Journal, WUSGOOD?, and WATER. Also a finalist for the 2018 Sonia Sanchez-Langston Hughes Poetry Prize, Jasmine was born and raised in Baltimore, MD, and is currently based in Brooklyn, NY. Follow her at reidjasmine.com
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