Michael Chang

2021, Poetry

STUDENT-ATHLETE’S COLLEGE RECRUITMENT GUIDE

lance: buyer of track pants & athletic socks

perfect loved boy give me a future

i like ur boy traits: ur too-thick ache’s elations

we can look at some terrifying art inside my mouth

young boy enters a dancehall feet loose

he fixes cocktails blindfolded

runs down the wooden escalator clack clack clack

david archuleta lookalike stares the whole night

why do i read the right-hand-side first

is it my chinese dna

if i am responsible

it is for everything

hardy explorers on borrowed time

ur dukedom with fairy lights

the mother of all orgasms

still unsure how we were led astray

is it possible i prefer ur breath over mine

nuance is poisonous

let’s talk generalities

res ipsa loquitur: the thing speaks for itself

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冷战 COLD WAR

I dream that Rumsfeld says “that’s all” to me & return to my desk, sulking

I wake up to find a female ghost on my chest, adamant abt popping a squat.  I call out for my personal Jesus

I wake up next to a cheesesteak.  They leave

Self-care is exhausting.  I need to be taken care of

Most days I put on a good face, a werewolf

Moment of weakness: slip under a friend’s tongue, liking it

Surprisingly pamplemousse, suddenly Domingo

The last time I see Mathias is in Tribeca.  He fights w/ his girlfriend over me

One day I will learn to stare w/o longing

A lot can happen in a month

Disavow me daddy

This poet has no intention

I’m living out the logical conclusion of Meet the Fockers

Your mouth reminds me of goodbye


FREAKS TO THE FRONT

i can’t remember how to write a good poem

heidegger says writing a poem is making a voyage of discovery

i don’t know what a packrat is but i’d like to be one

look at this hymn to possibility

ur paper-tiger confidence

our fluctuations

their ongoingness

regrets, we have too many

insistent as the low rumble of a maserati

were u at dewey’s coffee, admiring vanilla boys while waiting for ur vanilla drinks

sorry i was busy putting trash in my body

when i’m gone

will u be okay

or o.k.

or ok


MICHAEL CHANG is the author of several collections of poetry, including DRAKKAR NOIR (winner of the Bateau Press BOOM Chapbook Contest), CHINATOWN ROMEO (Ursus Americanus Press, 2021), as well as BOYFRIEND PERSPECTIVE (Really Serious Literature, 2021). Tapped to edit Lambda Literary’s Emerge anthology, their poems have been nominated for Best New Poets, Best of the Net, & the Pushcart Prize. In 2021, they were awarded the Poetry Project’s prestigious Brannan Prize.