Age: 17, Grade: 12
School Name: Frank Sinatra High School Of The Arts, Astoria, NY
Educator: Stella Lee
In Which the Second Sex Scene of Moonlight Makes the Cut
Your chest is a jug of orange juice,
a gasoline pump,
and this prayer is lazy, just as it should be.
as if it were for you (and maybe
Your legs are now the rhinestone in the navel of a belly dancer
as a pair of diamonds watch on,
gaze locked but still unraveling itself,
and so many things
are opening now.
Like a junkie.
How do you tell him
the room is crumbling? That your blood cells
are a stampede?
Agree with him. Treat his palm
like a stethoscope that’s hard of hearing.
Yes, it is flat, but it isn’t resting
on your chest—no,
it’s wide awake. It’s a hermit crab,
Don’t tell him.
He flips the light switch like it’s a house,
returns to you in the dark
like a firefly eager for a purpose,
and your state hasn’t changed.
You still shakin’.
You, a tweezed guitar string, are trembling.
The man before you was meant for a world more sacred,
but so were you.
Sunlight needn’t be seen in order to be felt.
Five rising tides caress you
and your lips mingle with his like melting wax,
like soaked beginnings,
like somewhere in this darkness
is rushing to be mopped up.
The surf digs into your back.
Water is a shapeshifter
and this reunion,
this relearning of bodies,
floods the room.
Passion will cleanse you both.
You are the sea, and he the sky,
both of you starved and clouded with mania,
both of you blue and rippling and endless in the night.