Adam and April

Our home is not a home when the sun goes down.

The way darkness gives birth to angry hands.

The way those knuckles howl against our cheeks.

The way statistics

can be twisted

into her.

Or her.

Or her.

Or me.

The secrets

hidden within

every crevasse of our home.

We are told to be quiet.

But we keep breaking down

in those parts of our house

Where the secrets are kept.

We have wondered what it feels like to feel safe

All the while knowing that we will never really know

Instead we have learned to study shadows.

To read facial expressions

like a precious


of what to say next.

How to duck down in silence

How to out smart death.

We know how to do this.

We have been out living men for centuries

Because for centuries our hips have told stories

amongst themselves.

Myths of origin.

Advice on how to be brave against fury.

Ways to swallow ourselves whole.

For centuries we have smiled at one another in our native language.

Giving each other hope.

I bet you didn’t know that

We believe in our own God.

Our own stories of Adam and Eve.

That We tell

And we tell

so that we will not forget ourselves

 It is true that Adam came first


before there was Eve

 there was April.

And she was not afraid of snakes.

And she asked for what she wanted.

It is true that Adam came first

But it is also true that God and Adam stared aimlessly at each other

Because Adam ran out of interesting things to say.

And when April came

Made of God’s flesh

God’s blood

She and God would talk for hours on end

as she inhaled.

And sighed.

And Inhaled

And sighed.

We of the April tribe

Know how to talk to God.

 So when they come into our homes.

All words

All knives

All hateful eyes peaking

Out of their masked intimidation

into our bathrooms

or the space behind the passenger’s side of our car.

When they watch us

they seem to have forgotten where we come from.

Because we did not come this far

without knowing how to shift shapes.

How to outrun the wind.

How to dive deeper than the sour cackling hands that bind us.

How to untie our own knots.

Our scars speak mountains that our mouths do not.

I bet you didn’t know

that for centuries our hips have told stories amongst themselves

the legend of what God said to April in the garden that night

He told her,

“Laugh a little bit louder

Hold onto yourself until hurts.

Write your grandmother’s name on the back of your knuckles

So that every time you have to sock oppression in the face

It will not forget where you come from.

And April it will come

Violence spilling out of closets

Violence underneath the stairs

Violence disguised as

Fraternity parties

Or a happy marriage

Or private tutoring lessons.

Remember my valuable strong April that when the world

will hit you instead of kiss you

Remember what I have told you.

I will put my lips just beneath the surface of the earth.

Know that when you are being beaten

or laughed at

or abused

 I am kissing your footsteps.

Every time you move.”