Kazumi as Sailor Moon
At night, my glowing limbs stretch thin,
clamp my straight lashes beneath the moon,
my petals pressed between mascara
masks, tuxedoed in black. This drawing
of a rose, and roses. It is no sin to slip
one glowing hand inside
myself, bleach the petals stitched to my chest
like dark crystals into oblivion. I know how
to whiten my hair, my skin.
I’ve soldiered through
these flames and called it Justice. Kept my hands
inside my gloves, never touched
my crown, or the true warmth of it.
But pause. I want to touch my skin
like this, Tuxedo, the slight tip of a finger across
leavening limbs. To know that my body is my own
eternal princess, cold, hard edge of a crescent—
to know I am more than petal,
more than thorn.
I am teaching myself
what love is. Pomp and primp, won’t lock my lips,
I can’t falter, can’t miss, you can’t stop to frisk this—
Oh Masked Man, Prince, oh Straight White Cis Lead,
oh Hollywood, America, Japan—I am tired
of living your rules. Follow me, I’ll teach you to love
properly. You don’t want to know
what an angry alien
can do. Stand with me,
or in the name of the moon,
I will punish you.
Kazumi Chin is a poet from El Cerrito, California. He earned his MFA in poetry from the University of Pittsburgh and his BA in creative writing from the University of California, Riverside. He has taught poetry and writing at the Young Writer’s Institute, LEAPS summer program, and the University of Pittsburgh. He has worked for literary journals Hot Metal Bridge, B.E. Quarterly, and Mosaic. He was a recipient of the Ina Coolbrith Memorial Poetry Prize and the Academy of American Poets Graduate Poetry Award.