All the trans news that fits! (and some that never will)
by Charin Davenport
You might have whispered sacred codes.
I could not hear, overcome by coral sand,
shining bits of shells in your black hair;
dry salt lacing your chest, descended
over rippled skin drawn tight against your stomach,
disappeared inside your faded yellow trunks
and reappeared, clinging to your thigh,
spiraling behind your knee, around your calf,
trailing off your heel into the lagoon.
Everything was you
A southbound wind fled across the equator,
startled the lagoon, and warm, swept over
our skin and stole the air between us.
Your words were in me before I could feel
small wave after small wave pulling
sand, grain by grain, from underneath my feet.
Looking west, you might have said,
Africa is sleeping.
Gasping for air, I asked, is your mother beautiful?
Can you see the stars from your bed in Puerto Rico?
Have you ever been this close to the equator?
The sun and the shadow that was you
wrestled me into the heated shallows.
Trivial waves roared against my ears.
My mother was beautiful.
She was a prostitute. She might have
moved to France when I was twelve.
An aching tide was pushing one of us,
pulling at the other.
If you said anything about the stars,
the equator, I did not hear it.
How could I, lying there with you
and the ocean
pressing down upon me?