The Commander

I hate every minute of you.
Not you like a person,
But you like a date,
Like a time,
Like a space inside my heart that is black.

Not black like all the colors in the universe,
(Or is it none of the colors?),
Or a dark mouthful of deep blue,
Like something you’d visit in a dream.

I hate you, the way your kind have overtaken me.
I am making something,
We can call it art,
But it could be a charm,
(not charming the way you are)
Or it could be something to hang from my rearview mirror,
Reflecting the past half century.

Yesterday, I found playing cards on the dirty sidewalk,
5, 6, 7 of clubs,
4 of spades and 6 of hearts,
A queen of clubs.
Success is the rhythm of this hand,
Yet I struggle to unfold my moth tattered wings.

I keep on finding out more,
This tangle of wire strangling me,
Am I the only one left alive and moving?
Did the rest of you forget, or were you left behind,
In some tiny cabin in the Virginia woods.

There are many clues,
I brush each tibia and carefully remove it from the pit,
The dry Persian air blowing across the desert,
It is now cocktail hour, and we slow dance to “Wild Horses”,
Under the stars.

The whippets’ gambol in the Virginia summer sun,
I am enchanted….I am enchanted,
The OED defines enchanted as “Bewitched, laid under a spell.”
And I am….I am.
The grass the brightest green,
And I, the smallest child,
And you, the Commander of my nightmares,
The day sharpens me like a razor.

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About Avery Cassell

Avery Cassell is a genderqueer San Francisco writer, poet, cartoonist, and artist who grew up in Iran. They live with their Maine Coon cat, Lulu, and bake yeasted waffles every Sunday morning. Behrouz Gets Lucky is their first novel. You can find their erotic short stories sprinkled in various anthologies, including Best Lesbian Erotica 2015 and Sex Still Spoken Here. Avery is currently working on a book of more of Behrouz and Lucky's shenanigans, a memoir, and an illustrated early reader children's book about a eight year old transgender boy and his family.
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