August 3, 2016

LGBTQ Poets Respond to the Pulse Nightclub Shooting

Ella Ann Weaver

sunday, june 12th 2016

leaving the house on sunday morning with the words 20 dead banging against my hollow chest and my heart is broken, unbeating, sad. i get to work on sunday morning and i'm reading the news on my phone and now it's 49 dead (i don't count the shooter because fucking monsters shouldn't be counted) and 52 injured and i'm crying and counting money that i don't care about because i want to go home to my best friends and my girlfriend and hold them close and shield their bodies with mine because bullets are flying but it's all just in my head (not in my head) and i know they're safe and i'm safe but i cry anyway when i read their concern in a text that says Stay safe today. OMG. Stay safe. and again when my mom tells me to keep my mace in my apron pocket and again when i read headlines that police stopped a man from walking into a west hollywood pride parade armed with guns and bombs and it's sunday and i just cry. i open the store on sunday morning and each customer asks how am i today and i lie to each customer and say fine. i'm not fine. 49 dead and the radio is playing a live church sermon and the preacher never mentions a word about my brothers and sisters slayed for existing. the door chimes again and i turn down amazing grace because it didn't save anyone last night and neither did the god they are singing to. how am i today? i died 49 times last night, how are you?

Ella Ann Weaver is a non-binary queer femme Creative Writing major living in the deep South. They are the Non-Fiction editor for Crab Fat Magazine and proud parent to two fur-children. They are a recovering Christian and passionate about LGBTQ rights. Their work can be found in Issue 5 of Unlost Journal and Issue 7 of Yellow Chair Review. " My heart shattered the morning I saw the news of what happened at Pulse. My world suddenly became very small and I wept the angriest tears that have ever left my eyes for Orlando. I felt every loss deeply. I still do. My mother cried and still is calling or texting every few days to see if I'm okay — I think it really hit her hard that there are people in this world who would gladly murder her only child if they could. I've drawn closer to my friends and to my partner and now do not hesitate to share with them how much I love them. My world has changed but I refuse to let it be for the worse — I refuse to let the bastards win."

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