Tara Betts is the author of Break the Habit (Trio House Press, 2016) and Arc & Hue (Willow Books, 2009). Her work has appeared in POETRY, American Poetry Review, Essence, NYLON, and numerous anthologies. Tara is also one of the co-editors of The Beiging of America: Personal Narratives About Being Mixed Race in the 21st Century (2Leaf Press, 2017). Tara holds a Ph.D. in English from Binghamton University and a MFA in Creative Writing from New England College. She teaches at University of Illinois-Chicago.
Cusack declares what you missed about Chicago,
how the places with the best music and art tucked
themselves in dingy, cramped places. That’s not
romantic, it’s what it was, and you ate food built
to insulate you from the hawk, air talons that cut
your face, how the el over Damen makes
cameos in the background, how this scene is
about love or at least amicably sharing a bed,
then having a beer because it gets cold. Why
not talk when your love moves out as you
debate the top five loves of your life, as if
a person could ever be the stew of the best
five albums you could hold in one hand or
the ten best R&B songs ever recorded. People
play themselves like a tape, over and over, yet
there is always one that throws in that one
single we forgot we knew, or never expected.
We wait to put the needle to their etched curves,
to rewind in a deck or twist with a pencil so
that song plays, maybe go back and find more.
Glass: A Journal of Poetry is published monthly by Glass Poetry Press.
All contents © the author.