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  • The Blue Between
  • Tameka Cage Conley (bio)

She take all the nothing I got, he sighed, her open legs a wet noose around him. Yet he could not resist her bed, crisp sky blue sheets, splayed with the dazzling brown of her, tickled him with fantasy of domesticity and light, children between their bodies.

He wasted no time, a man in need to be joined, thin, sweaty rib cage aglow from candle light, her hands traveling him, up and down, a bassist keeping time. She bit his shoulder, the skin slick and tight, like a belt. She howled. He wept into her, and turned into water. She saw him run all over himself and cursed: broke down nigguh, you just good to screw and beg. His hand, limp against the soft curve of pillow, curled into a fist, trembling to murder the devil in her mouth, the scratch of a man she said he was, the man he wanted dead. But when he saw the green star tattooed on her neck, where the tiny tip of his tongue dotted its five small points, he felt a new trembling, and fled. [End Page 255]

He walked up up and back down Texas Street shirt open, the muggy humidity denying him the blessing of a breeze, then stopped. His feet knew there was no place for a troubled man, glorious penis, his only gift. He damned the Red River said hell to Shreveport-Bossier and turned back, hope stout as gin on his breath.

Open, he prayed to the door. Open, I know you in there, gal. And she, who upon his departure, had touched every place he had touched— arch of a wicker chair, crust of half-eaten bread, sash of her black, rayon robe, flat of her breast when she laid on her back— could not leave him to moan alone. [End Page 256]

Tameka Cage Conley

Tameka Cage Conley, PhD, is a literary artist who writes poetry, fiction, and plays. She received the August Wilson Center Fellowship in 2010, and became a Cave Canem Fellow in 2012. She is working on her first collection of poems, tentatively titled “In Other Circumstance,” and a novel, “This Far, By Grace.”



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pp. 255-256
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