Why the fuck did I bother?
I stood in that damn line for
two hours and forty-five minutes.
Earbuds in and bitchface on to keep the
man in front of me from thinking I wanted to hear
his fucked up political opinions.
Just in case that signal wasn’t enough–it rarely is
–I had my eyes down and
trained on my book.
Standing in line, there, inching forward,
on all sides, in El Reno Oklahoma.
Almost twelve years I’ve lived in this
red dirt state.
Almost twelve years away from my Emerald City
away from mountains and ocean and green trees and
so much rain you never stop feeling soggy.
Almost twelve years parched in summer and frozen
in winter and nearly swept away in spring and fall
when lightning rips the sky and tornados
never manage to take me to Oz.
This red dirt prairie was starting to feel
a little like home.
And now? I can’t even cry.
Practice for future days
as I’m reminded, again
and again and again and AGAIN
that women don’t matter.
And neither do our tears.
Voting blue in a red state is always
But blue, red, green, whatever… those
colors don’t really matter.
This is about whitelash, the last hateful clawing
of the racist, misogynistic, homophobic monster
pulling itself back
out of the pit we’ve never been able to leave it in.
Red or blue, we’ve all been complicit
feeding the monster that now represents