Travis Tate

Somewhere, a dog is running a circle,
a small dog, a black one, a small black

dog is running in the field, which is really
a small backyard on a hill. The sun is where

it always is, moving towards the ocean.
I’m left in the kitchen alone, wiping a counter,

moving the spices from here to somewhere
else. I wait for the chicken to fall off the bone,

the smell of garlic & I think about what
to watch on the television later, while you

are making cocktails, asking from the other
room why the dog is barking. I’ll say a smart

thing, you chuckling under your breath. In a
dream, I’ll spend the day wiping windows,

making the glass clear, undoing anything
that’s not sweet in our home. When I wake,

you are gone to gym or reading a book, not
sleeping next to me, watching my chest move

up & down like a wave. You bring me tea
with honey. You call me honey. I eat at the

the table we built before Christmas,
my mother, the mac & cheese, loud

banging against the door when the neighbor
hears the music pulsing from the windows.

In the future,
the sky opens
larger than
it ever could
before now. 

travis tate is a queer, black playwright, poet and performer from Austin, Texas. Their poetry has appeared in Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, Underblong, Mr. Ma’am, apt, and Cosmonaut Avenue among other journals. Maiden, heir debut poetry collection, is out on V.A. Press. They earned an MFA from the Michener Center for Writers. You can find more about them at travisltate.com.

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