Sonnet for the Queer and Light-Skinned

I am black enough and I always was
the verb in its past tense not where I am
going but where I have been ashamed cus
of the color of my skin and no ma’am
a sister taught me to fix my goddamn
hair not my mom who put this baseball glove
on my hand that’s how I caught my found fam
they don’t all look like me but they do love
like me. It’s a different kind of love
not forehead chest shoulder shoulder cross my
heart and hope to die but hope that our love
will endure not fitting up in the sky
cus when I die it won’t be a bullet
but only the single look before it.

Mack Rogers is a queer Black writer whose work appears or is forthcoming in Foglifter, Diode Poetry Journal, Glass, and elsewhere. Mack is a poetry reader for Split Lip Magazine, staff critic for Pencilhouse, and poetry editor for Zero Readers Magazine. He has been nominated for Best of the Net, Best New Poets, and The Pushcart Prize. He lives with his partner and their three cats near Raleigh, North Carolina.