by Deborah Sheedy

I’d like it, for once, if a man wanted to be with me, for him to consider what elements he thinks would make us good for each other in equilibrium, as opposed to what aspects of me he thinks qualify me for continuing maternal stewardship of his childishness and arrested development (a thankless task, an impossible task).

Like he’s checking my back for strength. Like he’s searching for a mother.

I’d like it for once if he were to share what we have in common as opposed to what of my person he’d like to piecemeal consume and digest for himself, what he enjoys of me like I’m a thing to be picked apart for her guts and glory, what he thinks is justly suited for him and not what he is able and suited for, not thinking that while I might be a meal he’d hungrily enjoy he’s hardly a thing that could satiate even for an hour.

I’d like it for once for him reflect on what of me confuses, challenges or terrifies him as opposed to what gives him pleasure, comfort and solace, and interrogate why that is.

I’d like it for once for him to keep up instead of merely be out of his depth, then intimidated, then pretend he’s at the level. I’d like it for once for him to be honest and instead of smile and tell me he likes “how smart” I am say “how much smarter,” and sit with it.

I’d like it for once for him to think if he’s deserving as opposed to willing, and work to deserve a willingness out of me, too.

I’d like it for once for him really ask himself if he should profess at all, if I even want him in the same way he wants me, and if he actually wants the real me, and realize he’s making it all up in his head, and let me be rid of these these fantasymaker men and their ghost woman I have never seen, known or met.

Writer. Community organizer. Errant punk. Ne’er do well. Afro-Dominicana. High Hex Femme. Email: Dominicanamalisima@gmail.com

Writer. Community organizer. Errant punk. Ne’er do well. Afro-Dominicana. High Hex Femme. Email: Dominicanamalisima@gmail.com