The Watermelon (after Frida Kahlo)
I imagine you having a picnic with one of your lovers.
The two of you laughing, a little drunk, looking up
just in time to see a streetcar careening toward you.
The driver overcorrects, saving your lives but badly
injuring several others. It isn’t your fault, at least
not completely. People are messy, these triangles
we indulge in even messier. But what do you do?
I imagine you lifting the reddest slice to your mouth,
an explosion of pink mist, juice dribbling down
your chin onto your white guayabera: once a wedding
shirt, now just casual attire. I once thought true love
like true zest for life was rare, I just didn’t know how
rare. I imagine you feeding the bloody meat to her,
then to others. I’ve chosen carefully my colors.
The Watermelon (after Diego Rivera)
Your pain was invisible
and then it was a mural
on a public building.
They say I caused it
but who are they to talk
to me about causes.
I gave my life to one.
I gave my love to many
who could not endure it.
You could endure anything:
any diagnosis, any bull
headedness, any betrayal.
They whisper suicidio
but I do not hear them.
I'm old and trying to work
summer fruit into a portrait
of my grief. A blackbird
lands on the watermelon
I brought to the cemetery
and stares at me, unmoving.
I won’t begin until it leaves.
Even if the fruit spoils. Even
in death you are more loyal
to life than I’ll ever be.
Adrian is a poet, blogger, and coffee shop manager. Adrian's first book of poetry, Transitional Object, was published with The Operating System in 2019. He is the author of 'Thinking Queerly,' a bimonthly column at QueerKentucky. In his spare time, Adrian facilitates workshops on transgender inclusivity in the workplace.