Raymond Luczak


Our new Sheet Metal teacher left
us boys alone in the cafeteria.

My notebook was filled with
sugarcubes of want

One of them said, "Hey you!
What you doin' over there?"

My fingers were only
hummingbirds in a small cage

I sat up and freed
my deaf voice, my hearing hands

They fluttered under my chin, in
front of my chest, everywhere

The boys' eyes narrowed like a cat's
for a minute. Then they stood up.

My voice faltered as I felt
their fierce wings beating

"Fairy! Look at his hands
swishing in the air!"

Lilacs' fragrances melted
under globs of solder

The boys flaunted limp wrists. I shot
all my birds in mid-flight.

First published in Luczak's book St. Michael's Fall.

Raymond Luczak is the author and editor of ten books, including the anthology Eyes of Desire 2: A Deaf GLBT Reader (RID Press) and the award-winning novel Men with Their Hands (Suspect Thoughts Press). Deaf Blender Theatre will produce his new play I Never Slept with Helen Keller this fall.

(Ed. Note: A review of Eyes Desire is scheduled to appear in the September 2009 isssue of Wordgathering