As/Us Issue 5

It just occurred to me that I never posted this! Just in time for my birthday in December, my poem and the audio version of my poem, Firehouse, was published in As/Us! I’m honored to be featured alongside several amazing women of color and Indigenous women writers, as well as the winners of their Dear Native Youth poetry contest! The print version is available on Amazon:

Here is an excerpt:
Watching you with my lavender eyes
I always asked before I entered
you and I would meet at the center
and I’d inspect you with my looking glass
You can read/listen to it online here:



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What is white that fits in Black
and white halves and Black smash?
I bet his hands would hold the stretch
I bet my body would shake, if pressed
I was full of sex and honesty
full of him and probably
he was kissing me with his actually
I fell in casually when he touched my arm

first 33, then 34 like repeats and 3 years of waiting
vacant hands and open wrists
reaching out like pretty please and pretty dress
I would’ve fucked the sadness out of his mess
first number seven and then late on eleven
now we are separate corrections
individual constellations
as if I am to blame
as if I am all that’s left of the question
as if we aren’t the same

he with his pushing
me with my smooshing
I was ready and open
and crying when the cut drew
and it was deeper and louder
than most of my memories
or our separate parts
or our combined formative stuff
spilling closer and splitting both of us
I had no choice but to bleed him

now you can look straight through, it’s open and clean
I am in the back, hoping
eyes drowning in wine
drinking the soaked in
but you can’t come with actually
I sat there trying to deep throat probably
on top and inside of maybe
and I still couldn’t taste the honesty

I would like to go back to eleven
maybe I manifested the wrong seven
I begged for a solution
now in the aftermath, I am still learning
he left me red and wet
but in honesty, I’m mostly burning

after all of the panic, I went back for his eyes
like please blink me in or at least blur me out
I came late but it was too early
too much for 33 then 34 or 7 that turned into 11
I am no good at math or depth perception
but he was as wide as I was asking for
and I was ready to fuck the whole of him
wading at the shore near the rim of him
asking to love the parts that hurt up against his him

he asked about the thing I was looking for
and I said “deep deep love and childhood reimagined”
I said the last 3 years and my whole heart healed
or true raw with abandon
I said sex like long eye lashes
truth like our number 7
but I meant September
I meant the entire depth of him.

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Dear You (Who I Still Haven’t Met)

I want you to taste my raw with your rage
and fuck me out of my childhood pain
love me like the last three years
love me like still bodies after long talks
silence welcomed and arms dropped
fingers open and 34 years split through
all the ones before who couldn’t or wouldn’t hold all of me
will be charcoal covered in their own dishonesty
after we make the bluest love
fuck me purple with the truest love
bleed my name and I’ll cry out through my five year old self


with bloodied wrists and hands bent open
to receive the breakthrough of two collided
look what the Universe provided
I’m red and blue with your wet on my tongue
fuck me out of the lies covering my self-esteem
fuck me like I’m sorry
like I want you
like bury me in I love you
but always let me breathe
love me like the last three years
love me like my entirety
down and out through the underside of the bones on me


and we’ll breakthrough like red and blue
us too the purple pinnacle
love me like the healing kind
the split-through-knees-burning-begging-for-releasing- kind
love me like I deserve
like take my hands and I’ll hold your worth
and love it over and over until you know it too
I’ll love you like the truth has proved
like all 34 years
like hands full of your hair
and cut in half the lie that said you were ever hard to love
teach me everything about you
I’ll recite you like a bible
fuck me out of this depression
love me down to my sixth birthday
fuck me honest
love me like the last three years
love me like survival.
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Here are 8 People’s Stories About Coming Out to Their Grandparents (Slate article)

I almost forgot! I’m featured in this short, heartwarming piece about coming out to grandparents!

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Dear you (who I haven’t met yet)

Deep in the truest widest wettest part of me
I want somebody who laughs with their whole face
Somebody who smiles in pictures
but also looks pensive sometimes
Someone who’s thoughtful and animated
with thick arms and strong hands
Somebody whose hands fit well inside of me
I imagine you have lots of layers like me
And I hope you will widen for me
so I can pull you back and open,
looking in my eyes like “yes” and
“I’m here to let the hope in”
I know you sometimes come off hard but taste soft
I know we may come from different places
but you’ll always be honest with me
Put your all out on the table and
fuck me with your vulnerability
I know your face will look familiar
with full lips and a big mouth
I know you’ll like the way I feel in your mouth
You’re probably very verbal
and you’ll speak in ways that challenge me
But I know you’re also as silly as me
laugh-out-loud weird as me
And you never knew where to look
but you’ve been patiently waiting for me
I know you’ll be patient with me
gasp at the sight of me
with big eyes to see the entirety of me
without being frightened by me
You’ll probably live nearby
or be willing to travel for me
Climb up on top of me
and use your whole body on me
I know you’ve loved and fucked hard for clarity
just so you can trust with your soul and blood
that this is it and it’s here and now in the shape of me
And when you finish with the first taste of me
I’ll drop to my knees and say,
“what took you so long?”
all the while knowing
you’ve just been waiting for me.

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I was sure your taste on my gums had evaporated
but I found you awake in my hands
sliding down my wrists
like a messy egg yolk

stopping first between my palms
then between my thighs
so I tried to catch you teeth to taste

but when I separated
your mouth was dripping
all over my face

and all I had left was eggshell pieces
my bleeding hands
and my tendency to make fists

I am the wet and you are the water
but I’m not ready to rinse my mouth of you.

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My poems, “Song of Myself” and “Opening on Your Closing” are in the latest edition of Typoetic on pages 53, and 64-65.
*one of the stanzas printed twice in the second poem.

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Rip Out (edited version)

you loved me whole from the gut
until my flesh was caught in your teeth
then you sliced me open with your heat
all I remember is fuck you and fuck me
and we fucked and forgot
until the words got caught in our mess

drank you down to my chest
and my eyes blinked through
to the skin on your left arm
but we couldn’t meet
your mouth was cutting both ways
but I took responsibility for the bleed

every closer flipped around
and pushed us further
you are not a monster
you are beautiful and biting
afraid of your own displays
I was open-armed when you came back around
you said I was pushing you away

so my eyes bled open for your stories
while you were slicing my arms and legs
my ears held your mouth while you lured me
(I just wanted you to stay)
but you spilled and split from sweet to scary
(if I was the one you wanted to marry)
I feel sorry for the rest

I was held up in your gums
just trying to wait for you
but you caught me with your molars
I couldn’t hold the weight of you
I held my breath and you had my heart
(in between fists)
you were eating down to my bones
(just choking)
on your own flipping script

I swear you don’t burn on purpose
you want wet and water
but when you feel scared
all you spit is flame
chewed through my arm
trying to get me to believe you loved me
honey, I knew
but your love leaves teeth marks

held your promises tight like pneumonia
clutching my breath
with your teeth around my neck
so now I fear
every crush
every kiss
every tattooed passionate potential
is just another you
with my eyes sunk deep in his skin
like two hearts that
rip out and then touch
rip out and then touch

like my lashes and your ink
are still connected
and anyone I meet
will be you in another face
your sweet salty arms
growing out of another body
waiting to engulf me
fuck me confused
love me closely
push me away
and then say
I never even gave us a chance

you are beautiful and boyish
with hot skin and sharp teeth
still learning how to grow up
wanted to play house together
but never met me on the same street

so I keep my distance
from tattoos
and passion
and boys who fuck like liars
like love me
like love me not
like your teeth
have marked my skin for the last time

my legs were wrapped around your waist
but your teeth came a little too close
to my bare buried face
you are beautiful and biting
but I’m ready to grow up now
please stop chewing on both our limbs now
I’ve loved you and learned from you
please let go of my flesh.

{This poem has been edited. You can see the original version here:}

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Upon Going Home (review of The Messiah Complex)

My review of the play, The Messiah Complex; about the intersections of Blackness, queerness, gender identity and addiction is now live on Autostraddle!

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Armed With Only Our Souls Anthology (Digging Deeper, Facing Self)

I just finished taking the course Digging Deeper, Facing Self and I am pleased to share my two poems featured in the anthology from the course, Armed With Only Our Souls. The pages go from left to right and my two poems start on page 43 (on the right). They are both two pages long.

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