Thylias Moss
This Did Not Happen

This did not happen




although I have memories of it:

a doctor unwrapping a tutu

so I knew I was in a hospital

but one unlike any other

practicing strange medicine

but this strangeness has been effective



A hospital for dancers?





I was in, pink,



I had been in a street,

an alley and


I was left there, tutu shredded,

I couldn't dance




No animals other than myself, so the animal

in me






but tried to hurt no one




Found In Volume 46, No. 01
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Thylias Moss
About the Author

Thylias Moss was born in 1954, in Cleveland, Ohio, to a multiracial (African American, Native American, Indian, Caucasian) father and an African American mother. She is the author of many poetry collections, including Wannabe Hoochie Mama Gallery of Realities Red Dress Code: New & Selected Poems (Persea, 2016), as well as a memoir, Tale of a Sky-Blue Dress, and a children’s book, I Want to Be. She is a two-time finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in poetry, and the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the MacArthur Foundation, among other honors. She is Professor Emerita in the Department of English and the College of Art & Design at the University of Michigan.