issue 13: oct 2016, Poetry
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(not) a love poem by Phillip Nugent

congrats to daydreams
to white-washed fairytales
and happily-ever-afters

congrats to the Hudson
and the reflection of your face
as she shimmers back at you

congrats to beautiful black men
who Nikki warned me about
and they outta sight afros

congrats to palm tree lined beaches
to sunsets too beautiful
to be watched alone

congrats to your skin
activation of nerve receptor
as he holds you about your waist

congrats to emotion
to moonlit nights in my bed
writing love poems

congrats to time
to the uncertainty of futures
and the fleeting hope of dreams

congrats to pulse
to closeness of body and breath
the rise and fall of your chest

congrats to hands
to his fingers interlocking yours
and the feeling of never letting go

congrats to feelings
the way my hand hurts
so I stop writing love poems

congrats to love poems
to the turbulent starts
and the happy endings

congrats to happy endings
to the ones who get them
and the ones who don’t

congrats to memories
the ones I don’t own but wish I did
the ones of us

congrats to present
to the way you light up when he smiles
the way he holds your heart in his hand

congrats to Dinah
to her belting out “Congratulations to someone,
and how I wish that someone was me”


Nugent is critically engaged in exploring multiple intersectional identities – such as Blackness and Queerness – through writing, activism, music, & more. He has been an avid poet since he can remember, & enjoys reading & writing poetry in his spare time. You can find him on facebook.

Illustration by Taylor Mobley.

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