Dorothy Chan

Triple Sonnet for Tripling Your Chances

                    When the bartender flies my Aviation
to me, like it’s an airplane in a cocktail
                    glass, I think, Oh, cute, but also, you’re
not original, white boy, because why does
                    instinct tell you to infantilize the Asian
femme. It’s like I’m the baby waiting for
                    their Happy Meal toy, when I could go
home for my Happy Meal, a man actually
                    worth my time, cooking me dinner. And
it took me years to get here. “And in sports
                    today, I’m gorgeous,” said Mila Kunis
as Jackie Burkhart, the one-and-only, on
                    That '70s Show, and I love a loud as hell
and proud as hell girl in a matchy matchy

outfit, walking into every room on Earth
                    like she owns the place. I own the place—
which sounds like dialogue from something
                    streaming now on HBO Max about super
rich kids in LA who think they’re overcoming
                    adversity when they’re calling out their parents,
while wearing Gucci. Yet they won’t let go of
                    their inheritances. Or I hate it when rappers
call out women for having fun without them.
                    Or without men. Or the way men don’t give
up, especially when you’re taken, also known
                    as “Circling Sharks,” also known as today’s
cocktail special, with Mezcal, Campari,
                    a house-made lime leaf chartreuse,

                    piña-sugarcane tonic, and don’t you forget
the Luxardo cherries, dripping. In a video,
                    a Momager™ takes the Belvedere right out
of her Birkin and says that a Dirty Martini
                    should have two olives, but the answer’s really
three, because have you ever watched a fairy
                    tale come to life. And I’d really love to live
happily ever after, and forget every tale as old
                    as time. Numbers are truly the universal language,
or how three is lucky, and don’t you love a thing
                    that’s just right. Or how I triple my chances
by ordering three drinks: a spiked Thai Iced Tea,
                    a coconut soda with lime, and of course, coffee
one cream. Once upon a time, I bet on myself.



Triple Sonnet for My Fortune Since Birth



Dorothy Chan (she/they) is the author of five poetry collections, including Return of the Chinese Femme (Deep Vellum, Spring 2024 / Spring 2024), BABE (Diode Editions, 2021), Revenge of the Asian Woman (Diode Editions, 2019), Attack of the Fifty-Foot Centerfold (Spork Press, 2018), and the chapbook Chinatown Sonnets (New Delta Review, 2017). They were a 2023 finalist for the Roethke Poetry Award for Revenge of the Asian Woman, 2022 finalist for the Sheila Margaret Motton Book Prize from the New England Poetry Club for BABE, a 2020 and 2014 finalist for the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, a 2020 finalist for the Lambda Literary Award in Bisexual Poetry for Revenge of the Asian Woman, and a 2019 recipient of the Philip Freund Prize in Creative Writing from Cornell University. Their work has appeared in POETRY, The American Poetry Review, Academy of American Poets, and elsewhere. Chan is an Associate Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Book Reviews Co-Editor of Pleiades, and Co-Founder and Editor in Chief of Honey Literary Inc., a 501(c)(3) BIPOC literary arts organization, run by women, femme, and queer editors of color. Chan was the 2021 Resident Artist for Toward One Wisconsin. They were a 2022 recipient of the University of Wisconsin System’s Dr. P.B. Poorman Award for Outstanding Achievement on Behalf of LGBTQ People. Visit their website at