after Gwendolyn Brooks and Terrance Hayes


When we found her sex positions book, we

didn’t think it was real.


My mother wasn’t cool

enough for sex. We


flipped through the pages, turning left,

studying where each body fit in this school,


the detailed figures of the man and woman, the parts we

hid under cotton, kept from the lurk-


ing skin, a hand, a finger, the late-

night moon with its borrowed light. We


lay our bodies on the bed, to strike

the pose, mimic the face down, the ass out straight.


We laughed and snorted, we

looked like pigs, sing-


ing oinks, our faces in the trough, this sin.

I don’t want to say what we did next, that we


touched our own bodies, thin

limbs reaching to what bits of hair we’d grown, the begin-


ing of a secret thing, or that we

reached for each other, a fumbled jazz


of grips, on this solstice in June.

If today, I could replay our hands’ song, we


would deny its music, when we each die-

d a little on that bed, notes ending too soon.


Diannely Antigua is a Dominican American poet and educator, born and raised in Massachusetts. She is currently an MFA candidate at New York University, a Squaw Valley Community of Writers fellow, and Associate Poetry Editor for BOAAT. Her book Ugly Music, forthcoming from YesYes Books, was chosen for the 2017 Pamet River Prize. Winner of the Bodega Poetry Contest, her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Her poems can be found in Day One, Vinyl, Split Lip Magazine, Cosmonauts Avenue, Reservoir, and elsewhere. Her heart is in Brooklyn.