I looked at you
With your short hair and black square glasses
An 80s band t-shirt tucked into slim waist, denim shorts that fell a tad below your knees
I could see the curved outline of your breast when you turned to look at me
Like I was looking at you.
Hey, you said
The simple greeting caused my skin to pucker
While you moistened, then bit your full bottom lip
And readjusted your glasses with slender, honey colored fingers topped with dark purple nail polish
Hey, I said
Because that’s the best pick up line.
And so We started
Asking and answering
Feeling out yet avoiding the urge to touch
Softness against softness.
Then the hard truth came around the corner
Time to go, babe, he said
The sadness in your eyes
As my face fell in my hands and
My fear of the truth hardening
Until I turned to stone.
Stuck in the life carved out for me
Since before birth
The expectations hewn into a 5 foot 4 inch alcove.
Then your touch on my hand, soft like the kiss of a butterfly
Strong like the arch of a rainbow
Pressing a paper against my calloused skin
I look at you and brave a smile.
This poem was inspired by Hélène’s “What do you see?” Picture Prompt Challenge and also by Christine E. Ray’s Pride Month Writing Prompt Challenge – Brave.
Hélène’s picture seemed despairing when I first looked at it. But then I noticed the rainbow shining on the broken statue and remembered reading Christine’s prompt, and this poem was born. Breaking through the stone barriers in our lives (whether externally or internally imposed – like racism, sexism, homophobia) takes a lot of bravery! And while I know there are people reading this blog that may be put off with the topic of my poem, I hope the universality of the theme, “Be true to yourself” resonates and finds an empathic home in their hearts.
©️ iido 2019