A series of Collages and Poems by Shane Allison
When I Told My Mama I Wanted to Be an Organ Donor
When I told my Mama I wanted to donate my organs
She said, “No, you don’t want to do that.”
Tonight over hamburger, tomato paste and macaroni shells,
I mentioned it again; cuz the first time always deserves a sequel.
Told her I was serious and didn’t get the idea from a commercial
Or some Made-for TV-Movie.
She said, “Yeah, but the thing is, why you want to go give away your
Organs like that?” She once described them as the “meat” of the body.
She made me think of pig innards and chicken gizzards.
Her question was a brick thrown in the face.
“I could understand if it was family, but to give ya meat
To somebody you don’t know? What if it’s a white person?
You know how they treat us?”
As she mixed cans of tomato paste, steamed shells into cooked ground beef,
All I could think about were surgeons slicing into me like a pork roast,
Removing pancreas, liver, the heart of me. Replacing third degree burns
With entire layers of skin. But Mama’s words didn’t change my mind.
I still want the blind to have the corneas of my eyes.
My bones to the boneless.
Now I gotta find another family member to sign the papers
Cuz Ma doesn’t like the idea of my heart beating in the chest of a white person.
Haven’t told Daddy about this yet. Doubt he’ll care.
Much like a lot of choices I make.
Quatrain for David Warren Frechette, 1948-1991
When you died from an AIDS-related cause,
I was fighting to save my own ass
At Rickards High School
Home of the Redskins.
Years later they changed the name to Rickards Raiders
After protest from the Native Americans of Tallahassee.
Opposers to the change were cheerleaders in their
Royal blue & gold uniforms holding up picket signs
Instead of pom-poms. When you were writing poems,
I was dodging spitballs. Cleveland Richardson called
Me a fat faggot in woodshop. When you were doing readings,
Getting your poems published, I wanted to gouge out Eldridge James’
One good eye. The other one was as dead as a fish.
He wiped boogers on my shirt in Mrs. Bruces’ class.
He led a gang of bullies down hallways. When you were at
Parties, friends toasting your success, I was just a young,
Black gay boy tryin’ to survive my teens. I wrote poems
In spiral bound notebooks, hid out in smoke-infested stalls
Wishing I was a famous Hollywood actor. The day you died,
Steven Weber, from the NBC sitcom Wings,
Was my make believe boyfriend.
When you died, David Frechette,
I cried into my spiral bound journal.
Shane Allison was bit by the writing bug at the age of fourteen. He spent the majority of his high school life shying away in the library behind desk cubicles writing bad love poems about boys he had crushes on – including one substitute teacher. His two notable collections include ‘I Remember’ (Future Tense Books,) and ‘Slut Machine’ (Queer Mojo Press.) Shane’s poems and short stories have graced the pages of online joints, and a plethora of anthologies. He has edited over a dozen erotic anthologies. His longer stories have been published by JMS Books and Resplendence. His first novel, ‘You’re The One I Want’ is out from Strebor Books, as well as his sophomore novel, ‘Harm Done’. Shane is at work on a new book, and a new collection of poems.