I sing it out to the birds while dancing in the rain
I tell them, “He took no for an answer and still made me dinner!”
I tell the man who walks by with his dog “Do not be afraid,
for he took no for an answer!” I even told my mother but she
rolled her eyes and said “That’s no way to keep a man,” as
my dad nodded before reminding her I told them 24 years ago
I am gay and she should stop expecting miracles already.
While sweeping the porch and tending to my herb garden,
while my crystals lay out under the full moon I suddenly
stop, broom extended as if I might swing my leg over
and shout out to the stars “He took no for an answer!”
He comes to the door to bring me a cup of tea and I
think of my ex-husband who was so good at saying no to
any need I had but expected me to wait on him and wake
at all hours to please his wants. I should probably send him
a message, ask if he thinks his friends will recognize
it is about him if they read this poem. But the truth is
I don’t fucking care what he thinks because
I am a happy queer witch with a house-husband
cum assistant cum dog-walker who I love
and my girlfriend makes love to me in ways my ex-husband
never did, no matter how awkward that makes conversations
with my mom, no matter if my dad defends me and
men fear me and try not to walk past my house or
catch my eye because who knows what that witch is
capable of. I feel alive, no hexing is necessary because
he took no for an answer and I didn’t have to lock him
outside or get a restraining order or change my phone number.
I live, I breathe, I dance, I paint, secure in
my own space, knowing I answer to no one
and bear no responsibility to his ego.

DuckfaceAaminah Shakur is a Queer/Two-Spirit, Disabled Poet, Artist and Intuitive Reader who makes a living off breaking straight men’s egos and bottling their tears for sale to be used in ritual bathing, whilst tweeting a conceptual poem composed of the language of cis-male agony. They can be found across social media as @aaminahshakur and their website is