1994
Brandon Thurman
  Clothes shopping with my mom and grandma was a heaven
  of hue & bloom. I veiled myself inside racks of sundresses
  & nightgowns, skipped down the aisles, my soft hands running over

  cotton & silk. I let my body relax & exhale, too much, my wrist sighing,
  smiling. My grandma jabbed, “Boy, if I see that wrist hanging limp
  again, I’m gonna snap it.” That was the moment that I learned

  my body conjures violence. I learned to wrench my joints tight,
  to monitor & censor & punish. I made my body its own dystopia,
  became my own Big Brother, straining the flair from my skin.
Brandon Thurman is a behavior analyst and poet living in Fayetteville, Arkansas, with his husband and son. His poetry can be found or is forthcoming in PANK, Zone 3, Glass, DIALOGIST, and Noble/Gas Qtrly. He tweets @bthurman87.