wholly holy by jasmine king

i was six

when i kissed a girl

for the first time


we hid our faces beneath a jacket

so our teachers & classmates

wouldn't see us


in my memory

the grass was especially vibrant

the air bouncy & giddy

our giggles echoing yet contained

beneath the fabric

over our heads


pink, cotton-candy shapes

clouded my mind


for a moment,

i forgot i was wrong


i was a young teen

when my daddy asked me

if i liked girls

my skin felt hot & red

with fear,

shame & secrets


i managed a sharp "no"

& we never spoke of it again


but i couldn't keep the yearning

from bubbling up

to the surface

and spilling onto the pages,

the lyrics in my notebooks,

in my tone


i was twenty-three

when i kissed a girl

& it didn't feel like a crime


this time

we were cloaked by

the dusk enveloping us


the ground beneath us remembered

the shaking & stumbling

& pause


this time

i remembered i was right


i recalled the trembling

being a symphony of feeling

that my cup runneth over

with the depths of my humanity


my queerness is relief

it is sweet

it is choosing

to breathe

to soak up the fullness of reprieve

it dances & shimmers with

my melanin & my song


i am wholly

holy

me



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