Daniel Khalastchi
Dance Party for the End of the World

 for Doug Powell 


Here in this drag city, ain’t nothin’ going on

              but the rent. I don’t want


                           to be a freak, but I can’t help

               myself—I am alive with love, tripping


on the moon, coming out of hiding

               all evergreen and searching for sunset


                           people. Right on target, Doug, I got

               the feeling to use it up and wear it out, to get


away from the visitors burning with fire

               and maybe this time dim all the lights


                           right in the night and run away too

               blind to see it. I know there’s something


going on—a private joy, a new attitude

              of brighter days—that leaves me feeling


                          lucky lately, the power shame-free wicked

               game I love to love. Mercy, I got my education in


cha cha heels, bolero, unexpected lovers and I.O.U.

              souvenirs, more and more, the hitman higher


                         S.O.S. fire in the sky. In my house, the dominatrix

               sleeps tonight and you are in my system, walking


on music, showing out. Take your time. Enjoy

               the silence. Remember what you like, Angel


                        Boy, one night in a lifetime, a walk in the park. My heart

              goes bang thinking of you. I can’t help it. That’s


the meaning in the bush, together in electric dreams.

Found In Volume 52, No. 01
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Daniel Khalastchi
About the Author

Daniel Khalastchi is an Iraqi Jewish American. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a former fellow at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, he is the author of three books of poetry—Manoleria (Tupelo Press), Tradition (McSweeney’s), and American Parables (University of Wisconsin Press, winner of the Brittingham Prize in Poetry).