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Blush Suede

by Keiraj Gillis

She wants me to walk her to the door

as a gentleman should (in her estimation),

but I only want to drive away.

So, when she asks about the next time

we’ll see each other,

I hesitate.

“…Maybe next Saturday.”

And she pouts because that’s over a week to wait.

Her anger turns her as rosy

as my black Mustang’s blush suede.

I wait for her to move,

but she’s Gorgon-ogled stony,

anticipating my honor of the “rule” of a date:

a sweet, starlit kiss

in the moment we part ways.

Whoever codified that rule

omitted the pleasure of the date

as a worthy variable

in that outmoded ‘50s equation.

Picture of the interior of a Mustang, with beige leather seats and a 1950s steering wheel.
Image credit: Joshua Rodriguez on Unsplash

I never want to see her again.

Not at church, nor at a theater,

not at an Easter nor Christmas dinner.

But she can’t know that,

as her only crime is in her gender—

what renders two compatible—

a misalignment I know,

but to which she’s oblivious.

I only did this

because our bullish fathers insisted.

“After all,” her father told her,

“I see him stare at you in the pews”—

a lie spread as netting ‘neath

her free-falling sense of value.

“And to be true,” my father told me,

“you can’t ever know for certain

what you truly want

if the game you hunt

has the same satanic perversion.”

So, I glance at the rear-view mirror

past my black Mustang’s blush interior;

confusion’s in the place

of what once was elation

on the face of a girl who now feels used;

in the velvety down

of a nest of suede,

through empowerment delayed,

we all lose.


Black and white photo of the author, Keiraj Gillis.
Keiraj Gillis

Keiraj Gillis is a gothic and spiritual poet whose works explore the mind, heart, and arcane. His poetry collections include St. Sagittarius, The Gentleman Vagrant, and Handsome for One More Day, which are works that have allowed him to document his spiritual journey. He enjoys his work as an educator and spends his time immersing himself in the culture of the American South and Southwest.

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