Before Thirty

Looking back
the questions I had
were more a proclamation
of autonomous
maleness

More affirmative
than outcries of “Punk!”

More nurturing than
“Hold it in. You bet’ not cry”
when you withstand hit after hit
when your body
is a faucet and an
unsuspecting wall
built to withstand hit after hit

My questions were less interrogative
than sexual inquiries
and voyeuristic requests
to witness bedroom theatrics

Less deviant than conquest
Not as fearful as religion
Inconsequential to pink polos
and Mariah Carey in headphones

Innocence does not master sports
nor does it demand a wide stride
or pants that give in to gravity

Self-awareness can’t count
the notches in chastity belts

Looking forward
the answer I have is far more curious
than wandering eyes –
Inquisition resulting in full discovery
existing lands in the dead sea
of a man’s world

Here be the island
which nurtures life
I’ll build here
with questions all around me,
certainty floating in the sea

Break.

Between our lips
exhaled cumulus
notes, strummed lyrics,
chorded conversations
wisps of “soon come”

but ’til then
a grandfather’s tree
trimmed to a communal kiss
in heated seats
cracked windows
and blue aux cords
connecting kin
cumulus clouds perfuming
pleather coats and denim

Stringed pleas for time travel
Instrumental camaraderie
Recorded ancestral cries

Play yours next
I want to listen to the future
while now is a muted song
and a poem I sing
tentatively