in defense of the word “fuck”

in defense of the word “fuck”

by Liam Strong


in elementary i couldn’t contain my cursive

between dotted lines, the blue-white high-

way strung with prayer beads.


like my legs informing that  yes

i know what it means to curl

my tongue     yes      i know the hand bears


its own dialect                       yes      i know how the abdomen

of a capital S gloats with penumbra.

when the whorl of guilty notes


read like sheet music, i am heard.

loud & clear. we were ordered again

& again to curve the gushing belly


of our g’s until they exclaimed

with desire. i used to curse

because my parents cursed. what i was not taught


of language, i learned instead

from the crinkling of my body

like vending machine lunch


unraveling until

it dropped. when i write my favorite

curse in cursive, it looks like a key,


an opening, sounds like i want

you, i want you, i want you.