coming out to abuela
after Matthew 11:30
when I was young & brown my grandmother
made a promise, slipped a sharp medallion
over my head (head the way hand means
servant). god gave man dominion over
every creeping thing, so when your father died
you bought me a leash: ribbed, leathery,
uneven to appear a natural
supplant to flesh. your father made our yoke
grievous and my father is jealous of
your power: one
operant condition fallible body.
humanly perfect, my leash; the yoke
of your service is easy and light. dogs who eat
their masters begin at the head, like lovers.
Matthew Dix is a poet who lives in Charleston, South Carolina. In the fall he will join Columbia University as an MFA candidate in poetry.