Sharing An Older Piece– "Alex"

I read this poem at the Queer reading at the Atlanta-Fulton County Library over the summer. It’s actually part of a series; however, I think it stands alone.

ALEX

In your car we listened
to a Christian rock station.
I was surprised that you
sang along to every song.
I cracked a Christian joke
only for you to scold me.
You told me about your
strict upbringing,
Wednesdays and Sundays
in church. Two days
a week over the years
led you to believe you
were wrong to be
attracted to men.

You told me of the household
in which you were raised.
A no nonsense mother
with a middle ground father–
how they raised you to be polite,
respect others, have morals–
be as you said,
“a good person overall.”

What went wrong?
Do you think your mother
saw past death to see
you invite your co-worker’s
husband over for a game
of fuck the boy?
Did she cry in her grave
at her lessons lost when
you had him over each morning
taking a bit of him inside you
only to sit beside his wife
and smile, and ask,
“How are you enjoying your day?”

(05-15-06)

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