Tiffany Santos

Cracked Code

Diaphragm-deep inside a bad trip,
I enter the club, stoop, hand to land,
then stand safe, mean lack-lean machine,
a sheen of haggard happiness
along my jaw as I inch deep inside.

Then pelvis to velvet pelvis we meet
in the middle of the dance floor—
the yellow-violet bruising of one night's love.
I whisper my wishes through my teeth,
my words caught in the music, her hair,
like the weight of water on a beetle's back.
Her drenched yes dredged up
from the bottom of her rum & coke.

We creak back to her place,
a patch of steel on a southeast byway,
a scratched out rattrap stolen
from old apple orchards. We are cherry ripe,
lifted, drip-dried in the rain, dope-ripped,
walking, at last, a wrack line of possible love.

Tiffany Santos – a Western Maryland native, Tiffany is an avid poet, writer, cinephile, new media publicist, event planner, producer, and educator. She has taught various types of writing classes for summer programs, colleges, writers’ retreats, and community schools. She was the co-founder and editor of Black Hat/ Black Tree Press, which featured a short-lived but experimental local reading series in Cumberland, Maryland. She graduated from St. Mary's College of Maryland with a Bachelor of Arts degree in gender studies with a minor in Asian studies and has completed some graduate-level work in poetry from Carlow University's low-residency program. She is also a proud Madwoman, having taken the poetry workshop with Jan Beatty. Her poetry, essays, and short stories have been published in several literary journals including Backbone Mountain Review, Voices from the Attic, Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel Journal, Lavender Review, Wicked Banshee Press, and Dionne's Story: An Anthology of Poetry and Prose for the Awareness of Relationship Violence. She currently resides in Hagerstown, Maryland.