Loud                                                                                              by Marisa P. Clark

Another restless winter night—
I step outside to walk the dog.
Earbuds in, & iPod shuffle picks
the songs. Queen to Kate Bush,
the Killers to Hank Williams,
Barbra Streisand, Rickie Lee Jones,
Nina Simone. When JLo comes on,
my stroll becomes a strut & then
a full-on dance. The news is
so much worse than bad. I feel
light on my feet. I glide, sidestep,
shimmy shoulders down the middle
of the empty street. The dog
wags her tail too. I dance like
no one’s looking—no one is,
discounting Venus & the moon
slung low on the horizon,
opalescent behind a veil
of clouds. Happiness is
scarce these days of too much
death & fear & no one
coming near. I’ve vowed
to give my all to any bliss
that appears. Bliss turns up
my volume now—it spins
me round & draws me close.
A streetlamp throws a spotlight
on the asphalt, & my shadow
shows, a dark strip of ribbon
unreeling into a leggy dance
partner, perfectly in sync. Look
at those hips swivel & sway!
Listen: you can almost hear
the music that inspires
our cha cha chasse.
Marisa P. Clark is a queer writer whose work appears in Shenandoah, Cream City Review, Nimrod, Epiphany, Foglifter, Rust + Moth, Sundog Lit,and elsewhere. Best American Essays 2011 recognized her nonfiction among its Notable Essays. She hails from the South and lives in the Southwest.

Shibazrule, aka Lisa D. Chavez, is a poet based in New Mexico.  Her poetry books include Destruction Bay (West End Press) and In An Angry Season. (University of Arizona Press). She also writes memoir and fiction, and teaches in the MFA program at the University of New Mexico.  She’s delighted to have the opportunity to be Guest Editor here at The Coop for the month of August.


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