Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Tyrone Plays Icarus

Don’t put those feathers on, son. It’s not normal for a boy.
I can see you’re having fun, see your small frame
is bursting with delight to jape about in that photograph
they’ve been showing on the news. But don’t do it. Please?

You’re calling attention to yourself, throwing it in their faces.
They’ll want to wipe that smirk so far off your dial they’ll break
you. You’ll have to watch your back every step of the way.
I know you want to fly. I know your heart aches to be free

in the sky. But I wonder, did you even get to kiss a boy?
Anyway, I’m glad that you tried. Flying’s not easy. And gay
flying is just that much harder: shame melts wax and ravens
wait to peck out your eyes. You died a hero’s death, Tyrone.

And in a world criss-crossed with shadows your brief journey
stands like a rainbow candle casting light in the gloom.

8 December 2016

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