"Post-Hellenic" by Tanya Grae



Hair spills over my face as he glides
my cutoffs to my thighs, all Coppertone
& cream. Straight from mythology, he is
one of the junior gods, where I’m an extra
in this scene. He crosses the caution line, hand
glossing lips, tongue & ticklish. My hips
confess fireworks all at once —
the fourth of July. Early independence,
this taste. More — wings, electric, titillation
of what a girl can do, how to turn it,
serve it — to a boy in an Eagles jersey
& button-flys. He finger-combs his look
& leans back against the bleachers. Beautiful
boys without brains are disappointment,
the whoa — to fasten my shorts & float
feather-light, that subtle tallness that comes on
& lingers against the glow, a half-grin.
Here he ends, but there are highways
towns, other names I’ll forget.


Tanya Grae

Tanya Grae is the author of Undoll (YesYes Books, 2019), a National Poetry Series finalist. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, Prairie Schooner, AGNI, New Ohio Review, Post Road, Poets.org, and other literary journals. The recipient of several awards, including two Academy of American Poets Prizes, she holds an MFA in poetry and fiction from Bennington College. She teaches at Florida State University while finishing her PhD and lives in Tallahassee.

Photo Credit: Staff

Greg Houle