I understand what 

            it does.

It’s meant to come down hard

            on the head of a nail,

drive its point 

            deep into wood.

And yes I was there

            when my father 

missed with the blow,

            slammed his thumb instead.

He was probably thinking,

            “My son is fucking gay”

and lost his concentration.

            He was so angry,

I felt as small 

            as the head of a nail.

And his face tightened firm and steely,

            just like a hammer.


But he didn’t strike me.

            Not then at least.

I was never an easy target.

            And he probably feared for his thumb.


Author Bio:

Andrej Bilovsky (he/him) is a poet and performance artist. Former editor of  Masculine-Feminine and Kapesnik. His poetry can be found at the Quiver and Down In The Dirt.