Pride Month

 Image description: A large crowd of people at a pride parade waving rainbow flags

Image description: A large crowd of people at a pride parade waving rainbow flags

A party more fun
than one
by queer folks free
            to be exactly
                       who they are
                                 all the time
plus the ones given
           temporary permission
                      to occupy other selves
does. Not. Exist.

In queer audiotopia the dance floor is heaven
and God is a black trans woman
                      a drag queen
                      a high femme soft butch
                                          genderfuck swirl
twirling for her life
             their life
                        and our lives to draw
enough power from the rhythm
for another late night trip back home

Leaving the party shrinks the cosmos back down.
Pride month don't change
how it feels to leave the club          looking dangerously gay.
Some Brooklyn creep
followed 3 of my friends for blocks
           till he yelled about his box
cutter              and they yelled about cops

A man glared at my sunflower crop       
asked why I had on a woman's top
so I picked up the pace. Chop-chop.

All those LGBT.V. shows might make you forget
that an ambiguous gender is still a threat
and a boy could be killed for donning a dress
          Some people tell me gays are put to death elsewhere
          and that we should just be grateful
          when queer people are murdered and tormented
          on U.S. soil every single day
          by manchildren
          who see us as spiders to be squashed

They balk at unfamiliar beauty and
cannot understand
the labor put into webs
spun so tight by loving legs
that turn corners into homes
when home can't stand elsewhere
           without a snarling swat for the
                        grotesque thing in the way.
                                   For each destruction, we rebuild.

Kyle Lopez is a queer, Black Cuban-American writer from Montclair, NJ, and an incoming poetry student of NYU's MFA program. His writing has appeared in Afropunk, GUM Magazine, and elsewhere. Follow him on Instagram for more poems & fashunz.