To all the boys who think their kisses can be convincing

Hearing requires sound.

Listening doesn’t.

No and Fear
are the most recognizable nonverbal languages

in the world other than love.

This is not a love story. No matter how much
you recite it in whispers, hoping it will tickle

her ear or her heart enough to say it back.

If she does return
I love you
That​ w​ill only grant you permission
to feel reciprocation
not an access pass to jump into positions she didn’t say

she was ready for,


Silence is not a tease
When arms become armor wrapped around

her breast
this is not a type of foreplay.
This is not your favorite porno or
place where fantasies are recreated
in a picture she doesn’t smile for.

Her eyes are not asking for something
her tongue could easily request if desired.

I repeat silence is not a tease.

When knees bend as a fortress,
become a rooftop over her stomach.
That is not an invitation inside because

it is raining outside.
Wet isn’t consent.

A woman’s body can be a faucet
and not want you in her sink.
If a woman wants you to drink

she will ask if you are thirsty.


Your thirst doesn’t make her an open

hydrant. If she is not compliant with
your advances that doesn’t mean she’s

playing hard to get.

It means when you get hard you neglect
to listen to everything, her body has been


Is very easy to comprehend.

FRANKIE A SOTO is an author and poet of Puerto Rican descent by way of New York. In 2016 he was awarded the Multicultural Poet of the year at the National Poetry Awards held in Chicago. He’s featured for the New York Times, ABC News and has traveled all across the country and continues to actively tour at Colleges/Universities. He’s been published in previous publications (HeArt Online, Rust Magazine, Pedestal Magazine) and more. He is a Sports enthusiast, Coffee Lover, Avid Hiker and Adventurer at heart who can’t deny his love for fatherhood and his two kids.