about the author

Trained as a documentary filmmaker, screenwriter, and a veteran educator, Tristan Silverman uses her work to address the humanness of flaw, the fluidity of identity, and the reality of coming of age disabled, queer and American. For the last seven years, Tristan has been facilitating clinics and discussions using aesthetics to improve dialogue around identity, faith, politics and gender diversity on campuses and in organizations across America. Quickly becoming one of the country’s foremost emerging live poets, she recently placed 7th overall in the nation at the 2010 Women of the World Poetry Slam, has been on 2 semifinalist National Poetry Slam teams, was the 2009 and 2010 Chicago Female Grand Champion, and 2008 Chicago Poetry Champion and is the winner of the 2010 Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award.


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This Is How It Will Happen

Tristan Silverman



If a girl ever drives four hours alone in the dark wipe of 3am to meet you
            for brunch

if you can imagine her being too young to buy beer,

if she dances in the back without red lipstick watching your mouth

if she links a forefinger through your belt loop, follows you to a home
            on a two-lane road over dead rocks and souls left to dry,
            past red capes of dust fields,

if you pull over at the road’s split lip and she pulls over, too

if you sit by her pool, sick with no decent pool man, drinking wine
            until your teeth are bleeding without apology,

if you continue to tell stories that have no song lyrics to legacy them,

if you tap you forehead twice against the side of her bed she won’t sleep on—
            already spreading in the goodbye behind you—
            she loves you I promise, though she won’t want to admit it.





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