diannely antigua



Do you remember the way he crossed the bridge,
joyride, blunt in hand, played one of my songs,
said I was his favorite voice, the way you pick  
a color & wear it without knowing. He beat
the steering wheel with plump fingers, the same ones
that kneaded dough on Saturday nights, spread sauce,
spread cheese, drum solo to my croon, with no hands
left over to touch you. A sip of coffee. A hit. Some smoke.
And I question myself again, what is it ‘bout men on planes & places
they’ve never been? There is your hand here in Boston,
then the other girl’s on an island from a few weeks before.
But he can only hold her for so long, the clouds swallowing
the blueberry muffins they shared or the quick lip taps
during turbulence. What kind of fuckery is this, the open window
your cold thigh.


about an ex’s uncle you didn’t know, a hospital bed
growing calloused with release. Or about not being able
to find the right mask for the party, all too
tight around the forehead, the pull of wine on your brows
underneath the plastic face. Somewhere in this city
there is a pink dress spotted with black. There is
a metal swamp, there is a toad throat
ballooning from inside taffeta and tulle. She is the best
you’ll ever look, reflection passing with the blur
of subway cars, salt biting your face—it’s the itch
that stays. And you want to be good, give
the homeless man something when he asks,
but you only have May and the people
dead in it. Do you know
what it is to hate a season? When things sprout and
you want to dig? There’s an urban garden
looking for volunteers. You sign up
when a man with dirty hands offers you
strawberries. In Spanish, strawberry is one letter off
from fresh. In Spanish, tears are whales,
giants of the sea, moaning to more salt.

antigua2Diannely Antigua is a Dominican American poet and educator, born and raised in Massachusetts. She received her BA in English from the University of Massachusetts Lowell where she won the Jack Kerouac Creative Writing Scholarship. She is currently an MFA candidate at New York University and an Associate Poetry Editor for BOAAT. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Day One, Split Lip MagazineRust + MothTinderbox Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. Her favorite flavor of Ben and Jerry’s ice is Chubby Hubby. She lives in Brooklyn.





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