Good Boys

By MEGAN FERNANDES

Once in a car, a good boy
shook me hard. If you like it
that way in bed, then why are you…
the tiny bruises on my arms
where his prints pressed into my pink
sleeves rose to the surface like rattles.
Like requests. They thrived there
for a week until they settled
into a wet blackness.
A bruise can sweeten your blood,
can bloom the sweetness into you.
A bruise can bloom rabbits like pines.
Once in a car, everything between us
started growing. And then I was not
in the car or the state
or the east coast anymore.
I was at the summit of a prayer
reeling from an animal mouth,
my tongue an unseeable act,
because, here is the truth:
Even the good boys
want to shake you down, want to come
in your mouth and hair, want to quake
above you if only
for a moment. Come home.
Come home, another good boy says.
I would never shake you. I would never
do anything to your body.

 

[Purchase Issue 13 here]

Megan Fernandes has work published or forthcoming in Rattle, Guernica, PANK, The Denver Quarterly, The Boston Review, The Adroit Journal, and Hayden’s Ferry Review, among many others. Her book, The Kingdom and After, was published in 2015. She is an assistant professor of English at Lafayette College and lives in New York City.

Sunna JuhnGood Boys

Related Posts

stairs staircase

Corey

MIK AWAKE
Became a skinhead / a year after he moved from / Bumblefucktucky. / Hit me with his cast. / Hurt people hurt people / often with their hurt parts. / Who broke his arm? / His step-dad step on him? / They was poor, but they was white. / A black eye was the only / color he brought to art class. /

Toronto Author Photo

Ask a Local: Kai Cheng Thom, Toronto

There is a deep history of violence and cultural genocide here, punctuated by brief moments of collaboration and solidarity. This is never more apparent to me than when I am on the subway, where the vast diversity of Toronto's racial and cultural communities throngs together, and the historical power dynamics, class tensions, and intense humanity of it all comes to a head.

The Common logo (black box) in between POETRY and FEATURE, in white print on a light green background

November 2017 Poetry Feature

SEBASTIAN MATTHEWS
There’s something a little creepy about attending so completely, incessantly, to trauma. Something masochistic about it. But what was I supposed to do? I am a writer, a processor, a worrier. The first lines of a poem came to me in the ICU.