Tik Tok Dance Tutorial

by | Feb 14, 2023 | Issue Thirty-One, Poetry

1.	Hands in front of you, sway hips x2.

A woman with parts of her stomach 
	injected into her ass is teaching us how 
to dance. 

2. Draw heart on chest. 

She doesn’t 	ask us to adore her, 
she doesn’t 
	have to.

3. Tap each wrist x4.

I’ve lost 
whole years of my life watching 
	immaculate 	and false women 
		   on loop.

4. Hand around head. 

       the special burden 
		of my unfiltered face.

5. Swipe hand along mouth.

	the digital veil covers 
		in stars and sepia. 

6. Snap neck and pose.

Photog elixir to shrink my nose, 
	widen 			my eyes.

7. Spin to left.

I suppose I could be a gorgeous 
	in their algorithm,			 yet—

8. Roll arms, put one arm out.

I find myself reaching 	for something more.

9. Cross arms on chest, uncross.

An inkling 	of love kindled for my precious, 
	       lopsided 	    self;

10. Make an L shape with both hands and glide x2.

always, almost    	lost 
	off     another 
high cliff 
cheekbone 	mirage,

11. Roll arms to left, roll arms to right. 

but not lost.
	An unsteady, 	steady, 
a wavering, 	un  wavering 
				of acceptance. 

12. Repeat. 

The stomach-assed woman finishes 
her dance 
	and starts from the top. Then again
and again and— 
at some point, I stop paying attention. 

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