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By Venus Thrash


I am wearing a white tux with tails,
or a baby blue one with a ruffly shirt,
or decked out in classic black, or coolly
clad in a pearl-white dashiki embroidered
in gold silk, or my favorite pair of holy
blue jeans with a white tee shirt that says
I Heart Pussy, or the green one with the black
velvet fist raised in the air, & you're not
wearing a white dress at all but a wispy
wraparound, strawberry-red, that hugs you
warm & tight around the waist, cut low
at the small of your back, showing off
peek-a-boo cleavage & legs with no quit,
& our folks are here with tissues & hankies
bawling the way parents do at weddings,
& I won't be waiting for you at the end
of any aisle, but we will walk together,
arm-in-arm, hand-in-hand, our wrists
tied & bound with sheer purple scarves,
& we will be the only ones giving us away
under a moonlit sky abundant in stars,
& there will be no Wedding March
on the Steinway but Nina Simone
demanding Be My Husband & I'll Be
Your Wife
or Aretha Franklin's luscious
You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman,
& we won't exchange vows or rings,
but smoldering kisses & lingering hugs,
& there will be no parchment certificate
stamped with any State's approval
confirming we're married or in love,
but we will jump over a brand new straw
broom, we will light candles & pour red
wine into the earth where our ancestors sleep,
we will wash & anoint each other's heads
with frankincense & myrrh, & the women
will unwind butter-yellow kangas
from their hair & toss them on the ground
before us to cushion our feet.

Added: Thursday, July 3, 2014  /  Venus Thrash performs the poem "Uncivil" at the 2012 Split This Rock Poetry Festival: Poems of Provocation and Witness which took place from March 22-25, 2012 in Washington D. C.
Venus Thrash

Venus Thrash (1969 - 2021) has had poetry published in Gargoyle, Beltway Quarterly, Torch, and the Arkansas Review, and in the anthologies Spaces Between Us: An HIV/AIDS Anthology, Full Moon on K Street: Poems About Washington, DC, Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem's First Decade, and Haunted Voices, Haunting Places: An Anthology of Writers of the Old and New South. She has read at the Studio Museum in Harlem, The Schomburg Center for African American Research, and The Library of Congress. She was a professor of fiction and poetry, and a mother. Thrash released her first book, The Fateful Apple, in 2014.

Other poems by this author