WHEN I EXIST

Jennifer Hanks

 
 

Once I dated a man who loved my chivalry. How I’d fade into the lights, something solid in the background. Isn’t that what a gentleman does: fade almost out of sight. Love the animals of the world without teeth. Isn’t that what a gentleman does: kiss your man when he tastes like veal. Wear dresses that trap shadows on your breasts. Freeze in gauze tights and feel goosebumps rise on your legs. Isn’t that what a gentleman is: a collection of tightly packed snow. Beer frosting your throat.
 
Try on a men’s button-down and admire yourself in the full-length mirror.
God, the ghosts say, you almost look       like you exist.

 
 

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