August 3, 2016

LGBTQ Poets Respond to the Pulse Nightclub Shooting

Siaara Freeman

Urban Girl & The Answer-less Hearts

when you checked for THE PULSE /were you a family member?
/a friend?/ a real friend/of the family?/ were you scared?/this close to death?/
were you?/ nervous?/ like ants in a church of sun
& magnifying glass?

which God/ did you decide/ to blame?
was that God too busy?/greeting new tenants /to get back/ to you?

OR were you someone on the waiting list?/ do you think
you are next? can you hear?/the ambulance/in the dark corners/ of your mouth?/
does it sound like palms/ & palms/ & palms/ of pomegranates/ being squashed
by one fist?

is this conversation making anyone/ uncomfortable?/
which part?/
the politics /the blood /the love?

when you checked/ forTHE PULSE/ was it the first time
you checked?/ or have you/grabbed the wrist/ of your partner
& tried /to pull /the smile back out/ of them?/after the guy at the bar/
said what he said/or the mom said/what the guy at the bar said/
ten years before/ the guy at the bar/learned/ the right words for hate?/
OR when you check for THE PULSE/ are you smiling? do you make the trigger
finger/ & place it/ to the closest neck?

OR are you just a bystander? /who begs/ to be called/ innocent/ while waiting
for the violence?/ Is this not/ the Hell/ you imagined/ for us/our bones/ a firey /aerial ballet?/
did you watch/as close as you could get?/ did you hear us /scream/for help

& say finally
& say never & say good
& say exactly & say I told you so & say amen
& say you believe in God?

OR when you checked for THE PULSE/ were you checking/ for your own?/did you
become your own/ hero?/ are you the gold/ at the end/ of the rainbow?/did you know
how much/ you were worth/ before /that bastard /stole you?/
what is it like being an angel?/do the clouds taste
more like forgiveness or revenge?

Siaara Freeman is 26 years old, writes poems & is not sure if she is a poet or a necromancer. She is (for sure) a friendly neighborhood hope dealer. She is (for sure) a slytherin, The Lake Erie Siren & a Clapback enthusiast. She is a touring artist and has been published a few times. It's how she eats. She likes to eat. Her work appears in Tinderbox Journal, FreezeRay, Crab Fat, Texas Borderland Review, Rat's Ass Review, Up The Staircase Quaterly, Black Napkin Press & others. She has upcoming work in Mecurial Noodle Anthology & the Hysteria anthology with Lucky Bastard Press. Up The Staircase Quaterly nominated one of her poems for Best New Poets 2016, she is crossing her fingers — in the meantime she is growing her Afro so tall God mistakes it for a mic and speaks into her.

Glass: A Journal of Poetry is published weekly by Glass Poetry Press. All contents © the author.