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Poetry

The Soul Wishes It Could Blow on the Wound

His teeth are lilies bursting from asphalt—white, many petaled opulences;
amid danger, there is also beauty. When he whips me with the riding crop
of his tongue, I curl into the earth’s first question: To desire what exactly?
                                                                                                      He has nothing

Seed

In January 2005, three-year-old Ronnie Paris III slipped into a coma when he fell asleep on a neighbor’s couch while his parents, Ronnie Paris Jr. and Nysheerah Paris, studied Bible verses with friends from church. The thin and unconscious child was on life support for six days before he was taken off when medical professionals decided there was no hope.

Dear Eros,

I have found you where I shouldn’t—in the wrong bodies, 
at the wrong time, and once on a subway platform 
with my feet stuck to a pool of dried soda taking gum 
from a near-stranger’s mouth. That night you were spearmint 
and the 6 train. I have been woken by you, put to bed by you. 

Sphinx

The last time I left your house I saw a moth 
on the black skin of a puddle, ruining herself 
on the moon’s reflection. Dear sphinx hawkmoth 

Victory

The election is over, but we trudge back to the phone bank with our clipboards and scripts. We can still dial the swing states. North Carolina, Florida, Nevada: Can we count on you? Have a blesséd evening!

As in the last days, no one will answer.

Lord of Childhood

We are all enchanted. But we have to pay for it.

You know that part of town where the miners once lived? Sooty frame houses, porches whose floorboards spring up? Rusty screen doors that close with a thrum, then a series of clicks, then a squeak?

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