Gone Lawn
a journal of literature
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Gone Lawn 34
Autumnal Equinox, 2019

New Works

Oak Morse

Confidence Come Cradle Me

my confidence is probably sandwiched somewhere between my thunder thighs. i won't commit to calling myself a man, boy instead, my self esteem's the size of a bean. i got shoes for somebody to walk in; give me break in this body. they say confidence starts in the brain, well first i got to get past this bald spot with bumps in it. dermatologist call it folliculitis. i call it straight fuckery. i swear the scale exaggerates. i got twigs for forearms. i got this hump on my back from years of hunching over trying to hide my boy- breast. confidence is an emergency; i tried speaking it into existence aka faking it until you make it, but i just won't dare speak it out of these uneven lips with this mammoth size mole that sits above them. nonetheless, i got to grab hold of that confidence before somebody else gets it. it never fails, somebody always grabs what i'm suppose to have like women, like compliments, like love. not long ago a love left me for another who wore confidence like a comfortable shoe. my teeth are jagged at the bottom and i haven't bit into anything hard. i think i have trouble swallowing the fact that i'm no where near the right hue of mentally secure. i need to pick up a skin care regimen; i got enough dark spots and bumps that seem like chicken pox and a rash had a head on collision on my face. ring pops can fit around my wrist; 6'1 and 208lbs shouldn't be shaped like this. separate me from society for a little while so i can go back and see if i misplaced my confidence somewhere. i'm so tired of searching and throwing slurs at the Lord for being inconsiderate of my appearance. i just need to try to catch up with confidence or meet it halfway, so i can somewhat walk around life normal. on second thought, i bet if i ever do find confidence, it's probably going to be ugly and disfigured. damn looks like i ain't got confidence in that either.

Oak Morse is a poet, and theatre teacher who has traveled across the Southeast as a performance poet as well as a teacher of literary poetry. He has a Bachelor of Journalism from Georgia State University. He is the winner of the 2017 Magpie Award for Poetry for the poem "Garbage Disposal" in Issue 16 of Pulp Literature. Other work of his has appeared in The Strange Horizons, Underground, Page and Spine, Fourth & Sycamore, Dryland and Patch. Oak currently lives in Houston, Texas, where he works on his poetry collection titled "When the Tongue Goes Bad", a themed set of work aimed to bring attention to a contemporary speech disorder diagnosis known as "cluttering," a diagnosis which Oak has worked tirelessly to overcome.