Kai Thigpen



i killed the girl,


shards of her lodged

beneath my cheekbones,

in my hips


                                                                                                                  you find the inflation “pretty"


i killed her as soon as i knew


as soon as i could


i killed the girl & i survived


                                                                                                                     you wave at her, try to strike

                                                                                                                                      up a conversation


blood in the grooves of my


    you appear at my side with gauze

          for her wounds

from now on, i promise, just strings

just poems

just form after form with my signature

          where are the forms

              with her name, you ask

i promise, maybe ink or paint, but no more



when she died her carcass stayed

    your hair would be beautiful

      if you grew it out

suspended in front of my body

people keep calling out to her



& i need to let them know, sorry,

it’s just me


       you don’t hear me. you keep talking

Poet Biography

Kai Thigpen is a social worker who provides therapy to LGBT+ community members. Poems of theirs have previously appeared in several publications including ZymbolHandsome, and Wild Age Press; they were nominated for the Best New Poets anthology in 2015.