there's an iranian drag queen on rupaul's drag race
Her name in Farsi emblazoned in sequins across her fake tits. Oh, to rest my head in between that script
I know so well, to feel the soft padding of the breasts I’ve always wanted. I am ready to call her mother,
let my breath of the soft last syllable drift up into the depths of her wig.
At dance practice, she wears a t-shirt that says daddy (but in Farsi) and the Iranian queerness of it all
lifts me straight up to heaven where all my gay ancestors are waiting for me in rosewater baths.
They anoint me and I’m ready to take the crown. It’s me and Jackie against the judges.
I show her off, icon that she is: Look at her perfectly contoured face,
a snatched waist, a peek (just a peek!) of beard underneath her makeup.
Oh, to be womanly only when necessary.
Oh, to be a dragonfly, so thin and shimmering. Flitting about a garden. Slender legs, the weight of them so light,
even a daisy does not waver. And there she is, in high heels, beckoning
through a TV screen. I am ready to put one foot directly in front of the other, stomp down the runway. When I reach the end, I will jump. Certain I can fly with Jackie’s glittering wings to guide me.
Saba Keramati is a Chinese-Iranian Virgo writer from the San Francisco Bay Area. A graduate of University of Michigan and UC Davis, her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and appears or is forthcoming in AGNI, Passages North, Michigan Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. She loves peach gummy rings. Twitter: @sabzi_k; Website: sabakeramati.com.