Cover Photo: A black-and-white screencap of singer Jazmine Sullivan facing the camera but looking above it, mouth gritted, with silver dangling earrings, thick, false eyelashes, and a voluminous hairstyle.
Screencap from the music video for Jazmine Sullivan's "Pick Up Your Feelings"/RCA

How Heaux Tales Taught Me to Shed Shame

Like Jazmine Sullivan’s “The Other Side,” a song from her latest EP, Heaux Tales, I saw a life outside the confines of conservatism—the length of my skirt and the policing of what I was allowed to say and do.

Just come through my door

take off my clothes

and turn on the red light.

Heaux Tales

Heaux Tales saw


.Heaux Tales

Heaux Tales

Gotta stop getting fucked up

What did I have in my cup?

I don’t know where I woke up

Okay, I’ma get my own, and I’ma be able to stand on my own

Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Sister OutsiderThe Uses of the Erotic

Seven Deadly Sins of Being a Woman


Heaux TalesHeaux Tales

Heaux Tales

Khalisa Rae is an award-winning poet and journalist based in Durham, NC. She is the author of the debut collection, Ghost in a Black Girl's Throat (Red Hen Press 2021). Her essays and articles are featured in Autostraddle, LitHub, Bitch Media, NBC-BLK, and others. Her poetry appears in Frontier Poetry, Florida Review, Rust & Moth, PANK, Carousel, HOBART, among others. Currently, she serves as Assistant Editor for Glass Poetry and co-founder of Think in Ink and the Women of Color Speak reading series. Her second collection Unlearning Eden is forthcoming from White Stag Publishing in 2022.