Jess Day Believes in My Shooting Star But I Don’t

after Bianca Phipps

You can see her smile/ framed by/thick black glasses/hair tumbling down/ as carefree as my spirit/on a rainy day;/ an umbrella’s only purpose/is to twirl raindrops/and say to the world/I have a dream./Jess Day believes in my shooting star./Jess, how can you see it but I can’t?/Her doe / eyes stare/ at you/ like she’s in a silly/ trance./ Hands extended/ to everyone/ spinning in colourful dresses/ she doesn’t/ want/ to hurt/ you./Hey, Jess/ you believe in me/when my umbrella is broken/ & you ask me to do the chicken dance/ at a wedding/even though your roomies of three dudes/are embarrassed of your/quirky/self./ Jessi/ we are so alike/but so different./Like how/ our silly songs/ try to cancel out/ yelling/ between/ loved ones./ You’re not great at conflict/ but I can handle the heat./In Los Angeles/ you brought your students/ to the beach/who didn’t even know what/the ocean/looked like./Jess, from living on an island,/ I can tell you that barnacles/ are sharp/and the ocean cold like the tension/ between you and Nick,/ your secret crush that’s so obvious./ Have you seen a purple starfish/sprawled out/ on a rock/because that’s it’s home?/ Not all beaches have smooth sand;/ some have bumpy pebbles which hurt your bare feet./ I used to sneak over to the private beach and indulge/in LGBTQ YA/ when I was a teen./ Did you ever do that too?/Probably not, because you follow rules//My poetry teachers tell me/to read/as much as I write./ You’re a teacher too,/ Jess/ if you taught poetry/ would you say the same?/ You believe in your students/ so much/ & my hard work paid off/ & you screamed/with my poetry family/about my chapbook/even though/it had/ no spine./All of my poetry friends bought it/ even though the/ topic was niche./Do you see your shooting star/Jess?/If you can see mine/why can’t I too?

Sita Gaia (she/they) is the author off the chapbook “Knocking On the Body’s Door: Poems to Read on the Bathroom Floor” (Prolific Pulse Press, LLC 2021″ which received a score of 4.5 on Good Reads. They have also been featured in Harness Magazine, Kissing Dynamite, Anti Heroin Chic and the upcoming issue of Corporeal Lit. They drink too much coffee, and reside in Vancouver, BCwith their wife.

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