Cruising East LA, I pass the most beautiful boy.
He’s wearing a white T-shirt three sizes too big
& starched stiff baggy Levi’s as wide
as a pregnant bear’s ass.
(My whole life rotates around him.)
I hit the steering wheel into a violent U-turn,
screeching tires burning blue smoke.
Startled by my maneuver, the skinny cutie
whips out  a .45 from the kangaroo
pouch of his plus-size jeans
& aims right above my nose.

A cop car descends upon the scene,
a loudspeaker admonishing, “Drop the weapon!”
No, my darling, don’t turn the gun sideways
then kneel on one knee & then the other
before flattening your crisp white shirt,
your radiant cheek & then the pistol’s jowl
against the dirty sidewalk.
Don’t release your firearm
& place both hands behind your back
waiting for handcuffs.
Don’t look at me like that
as if I betrayed our love.


José Enrique Medina earned his BA in English from Cornell University. He writes poems, short stories and novels. His work has appeared in Burnside Review, Reed Magazine, American Writers Review, and other publications. He is a VONA (Voice of Our Nation) POC fellow.

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