August 3, 2016

LGBTQ Poets Respond to the Pulse Nightclub Shooting

Mitelia Tribbitt


It only took two words, end of the
"What if" —
Well, they're prettier with their mouth closed, but they're speaking
Good God they're speaking it into the hollows of my collarbones,
into the dull aching place between my ribs where I've been
tender for hours. Since.
"You should just,
you should do it because,
because what if that's how you came out to your family.
What if.
You know."
So I'm closing my eyes, breathing into their open mouth,
I'm thinking they're right.
"What if"
I'm thinking that sounds like
my fate.
Taking my last breaths on a bathroom floor,
my mother finding out that I'm


in a headline.
My yearbook photo plastered on the newspaper while she
sips her coffee.
I'm thinking
she will not wish me back, she will
pray for my soul.
Pray that the bullet was laced with holy water to
finally draw out the demons
and the only one who will cry for me
will be this person beneath me,
gripping my waist, wet seal of their mouth pressed to my neck.
I'm thinking
It's easy for them to say that it's easy
but I am just a few shades too dark to ever be
honest with a parent.
I'm thinking
no she will not wish me back.

Mitelia Tribbitt is a queer student in San Francisco.

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