my white willow name is doctor, creator
of cold sheets, levee raiser as i kiss
cheek & child, i am softer in my own
hands, but hard as light parsed through a man’s lens
to empty cement giants and husk men
i have left retrograding, i am sorry
under my heel: rainwater, my toe: typhoon
i am all weight, all heat — there is no end
to the storm. me, stealer of mouths, mouth of
vitriol. my hair is shedding now. beasts
manifest from my hairbrush, moonlighting
old boys downtown, beating the cement with
reasons to be alive. breaths catch, girls
levitate. my boy,
give me reason to love them.
Diana Khong is a queer poet and artist of color from Massachusetts. She is currently on the five-femme of color team curating the small zine, Ascend, and the literary magazine, Girlfruit. Her work takes on modern colonization, life post-diaspora, and what it feels like to be a Vietnamese woman in a white man’s America. She is 16.