Dominant Trait by Janella Moy

One day my aunt said,
“Girl if you keep whistling…
You’re going to turn into a boy!”
Zowie…Shaping my lips
Into an O and using
My genetically dominant
Tongue curling trait,
I began practicing
Right then and there,
To become an expert whistler.
Not that I wanted to be a boy,
Exactly, but I sure was
Envious of all those
Y-chromosome kids
Down the street who could
Emit high-pitched notes
That made my dog’s ears
Jump to attention.
Even better, were the talented young men,
Who, by placing two fingers
Between their lips, could
Make auditory contact with
Their friends, two blocks
Over. Yes, it was my dream
To produce treble notes
Through blades of grass,
And between my second and fifth fingers.
Two years of braces
Robbed me of the ability
To funnel air between my
Front teeth, while those
Lucky enough to have
A Lauren Hutton smile
Were always showing off their
God given talent. But me,
I practiced and practiced
Blowing air between zoysia,
Rye, crab, and blue grass,
Lip O-ing and tongue curling,
Honing my skill until
A shrill whistle,
Delivered by a double X,
Sliced through still air
Wherever I went.


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