With What Light There Is Left, You & I Make More
my mother watched us hold hands
& didn’t have shit to say about it.
maybe it is because i never told her your name
you & i just didn’t have the time to defend
what there was no room to define;
not when the sky was foaming red at the mouth for blood, insatiably crazed by
a hunger only known to boys who steal
without their hands. yet we stole this,
right out of the corners of their greedy mouths
ripping their teeth from the roots and watching them
a starved body, excommunicating a sustenance
not under its jurisdiction becomes
a crystal in death, refracting our kisses into rainbows
for us to dance to. and this
we call justice. call death making moonlight,
a holy and gay reverie.
it was this knowledge that lead me
to rob you of your apprehension, while
our new sky held us with light and
god seemed to say,
“what touch have i ever forbidden in times like this?”
maybe we were back in the park, a flower tucked behind each ear & a question
caught between each tooth;
“what are we going to tell people this is?”
maybe we were in my bed, toying with the idea
of conception, knowing full well this kind of
boogie and rug-cut makes no kind of flesh mistakes,
save for an inexplicable stain and a dawn’s harsh
rebuke cast upon our shimmering, almost ashamed
mama told me love would be like this;
a pile of vengeful books on my chest,
your hair fanned out on our dusty marble
& my desperate fingers everywhere i
can touch in the last couple seconds
before this world is eclipsed by its
own thirst for a clear breath.
then there is darkness. the kind you
& i are so used to, we could call it home.
plant flowers in it & breathe deeper than
the driest, angriest canyons.
& i know blood. we know rainbows. we know closets & secrets
what, under this new disco ball sky
with the sugared skeletons of every
hollow voice that uttered “dyke” as we walked past,
is there left to shed like a grandmother’s
old coat? what tradition, between this
new landscape we roam, is there no room to
what are we now? one?
the rulers of a new world
that has only retained our clasped hands
in all its old languages?
Khalypso is an 18 year old poet and actress born in Berkeley, CA and currently residing in Elk Grove. She is the Social Media Manager of Black Napkin Press and Poetry Editor of Cerurove Magazine as well as Culaccino Magazine. Her work centers primarily around charting the complicated existence of being colored and woman and alive—a metaphysical dilemma she wishes she could conquer and whose defeat she would whisper the secrets of into Ntozake Shange’s ear. Her work has been published in or is forthcoming in The Columbia Review, Crab Fat Magazine, Vending Machine Press, and Black Napkin Press. She will rep South Sac ’til her dying days and lives for black celebrities dragging the Kardashians for filth.