L’APPEL DU VIDE

AN EXCERPT BY CHRISTINA COOKE

her, there fat, dark-skinned woman in skin-tight shorts – swells of skin curving not pale, flat boasting space between knees. can you think: her there beautiful? maybe you can, during doors-closed, lights-off swells of skin, cushioning maybe you can, after pausing, pitying gosh, big women with their big mouths and big, big personalities how they make us laughmaybe she is boisterous maybe she is yearning to cushion or wants soft lips, warm hands thinks herself people-shy where heat, only heat could outweigh her unwillingness to be seen. but you do see her. because she’s fat because she’s dark because she’s in skin-tight shorts. me, and my soft dark skin covering tissue, fat thick flesh surging to rounded tips. used to be pushed, cupped, underwired – exposed awaiting long hair flicked loose from permed-straight scalp. used to be cloaked beneath button-downs and suede vests breasts smashed against ribs like a secret. no cupping, no smoosh – now nestled within lycra tops, breezy tanks cradled mine. her, me her hair falls against my chest cowlicks curling up beckoning, “come.” reaching along her cheek, her neck catching loose strands as she cupsflattenscradles palming my breasts. fingers to warm skin with both hands i hold her just hold her swells of skin curving not pale, flat she exhales makes space between her knees. Artwork © Nakeya B  

her, there

fat, dark-skinned woman
in skin-tight shorts –

swells of skin curving
not pale, flat
boasting space between knees.

can you think:
her
there
beautiful?

maybe you can,
during doors-closed, lights-off
swells of skin, cushioning

maybe you can,
after pausing, pitying
gosh, big women with their big mouths and big, big personalities
how they make us laughmaybe she is
boisterous
maybe she is
yearning to cushion

or wants soft lips, warm hands
thinks herself people-shy
where heat, only heat
could outweigh
her unwillingness
to be seen.

but you do
see her. because she’s
fat
because she’s
dark
because she’s in skin-tight shorts.

me, and my

soft dark skin
covering tissue, fat
thick flesh surging
to rounded tips.

used to be
pushed, cupped, underwired – exposed
awaiting long hair flicked loose
from permed-straight scalp.

used to be
cloaked beneath button-downs and suede vests
breasts smashed against ribs
like a secret.

no cupping, no smoosh – now
nestled within lycra tops, breezy tanks
cradled
mine.

her, me

her hair
falls against my chest
cowlicks curling up
beckoning,
“come.”

reaching along her cheek, her neck
catching loose strands
as she cupsflattenscradles
palming my breasts.

fingers to warm skin
with both hands i hold her
just hold
her
swells of skin curving
not pale, flat

she exhales
makes space between her knees.

Artwork © Nakeya B

 

Malise RosbechComment