When they come at you with all of your crimes
spilling from their hands to tell you that you’re
dangerous, don’t shrink. Believe them. Lift
your dress. Tell them that the city in your soul
never sleeps no matter how many lullabies
have tried to weave their way through its streets.
Tell them about the sirens. The glass. The boys
you made messiahs. The back room at the bar,
the picnic table in the rain, whose bed you woke
up in the morning of 9/11. Don’t hold back.
Tell them. Tell them about the shoplifting.
The slashed tires. The smashed windows.
When they come at you like your skirt
is an invitation. Tell them to go home.
When they come at you with fists,
make your face the storm
that will swallow them