I Didn’t Just Come Here to Dance

It was your birthday 
in the back room of Confetti's, with tiki cages 
and a dance floor like a boxing ring. I saw him 
holding you, cradling your ass against the zipper 
of his blue jeans. I wished I were a monster—mouth full 
of fangs and rusted keys, fingers like the sharp, marble peaks 
of mountains I'll never climb. I wanted to be that beast, baby, 
if only to scare him away, to keep his hands out of that hair of yours. 
Driving to school the next day, your neck was covered 
in cherry pits. It was hot. I kept the windows down.


Hunter Burke (he/they) is a queer poet and performer originally from Friendswood, Texas. His work has been previously published in Passengers Journal, Impossible Archetype, The Beacon, and on poets.org. He was the recipient of the 2019 William C. Weathers Memorial Prize for Poetry. Hunter currently lives in New York City. Instagram: @hemmett__