i am a SWAT member
breaking in through the perfectly curated glass window
of a basement theatrette, a small bar off the main drag
armed with:
insufferable pastiche
more R-rated innuendos than you can possibly afford
punishment fetishes
metaphors about Napalm over my perfectly waxed butthole
agent orange up in my boy pussy
playing war games with straight men because I know what it is to dare to live

i am a vortex mega howler
flying through the air
screaming in free verse:
a drone strike with camp flair
all the while reckoning with the fact that
if the world is going to hate me for being queer 
then I might as well make a weapon out of myself.

poetry for me is not so much of a liberation as it is delicious shrapnel
i can rip apart everything you think you know about me
and ungraciously throw it back
in your face.

i am a bejewelled finger hovering over the Big Red Button
a thousand words like cluster munitions threatening: “I’ll cut you up, bitch!”

vindictiveness, in this sense, then, is self-selecting
and so I’m left butt-fucking on a massive pile of Plutonium while Daddy Manhattan watches.

These are my unconditional terms of your surrender: no more dead faggots.

For too long your bookshelves have become a graveyard for our poets
the spines of each chapbook brilliant white bone –

Alice Dunbar Nelson (1935); Frank O’Hara (1966); Candy Darling (1974); Eric Emerson (1975); Crystal LaBeija (1982); Pauli Murray (1985); Jackie Curtis (1985); James Baldwin (1987); Jean-Michel Basquiat (1988); Venus Xtravaganza (1988); Jack Smith (1989); Keith Haring (1990); John Sex (1990); Arthur Russell (1992); Audre Lorde (1992); Angie Xtravaganza (1993); David Wojnarowicz (1992); Essex Hemphill (1995); Edward A. Lacey (1995); Herbert Huncke (1996); Ginsberg (1997); June Jordan (2002); Pepper LaBeija (2003); Willi Ninja (2006); Carmen Rupe (2011); Larry Kramer (2020)….

fuck me with your atom bomb
while improbably draped in an original Bob Mackie gown:
i am, like, totally covered with your sparks –
fireflies in the morning rain
and realising that that old dead faggot was onto something, y’know!

with one stilettoed heel in front of the other, He cries
I can walk!
I can walk!

Featured photo by Justus Menke on Unsplash.


In a dream, you saw a way to survive, and you were filled with joy.


Help keep the lights on.

find us on: