i do not want the all over gentle ones who move me like i am made of spun sugar, brittle like my mother’s teeth, stretched like my father’s temper. i do not want the ones who want soft moons, with just enough crescent for a sufficient edge, tender slivers of light they can bring home to their mothers. i do not want them near me, with their worlds like a clear aura, like pretty pictures and water like diamonds, like a place i used to live in. i want them to lock their doors and drop prayers like a carved bar across a desperate door, i want them to shutter themselves and not dare to love me, for i am coming over the hill like a bitter sunrise, like a monster, like a boiling shadow.

let them send for the ones like me, who burn up the air like walking suns. i want the ones who move me like i am made of rage and metal, like i cannot break a second time, with indelicate violences and tongues like knives. i want the ones who seize throats and force the sky to its knees, the unforgiving ones with wicked tendons and wicked thoughts. their worlds are like storms, like roaring pictures and water like ink, like a place i thirst to find. i want to lock myself in with them and run out of air, to be loved like a hungry weapon, to lie in bruises like a bloody sunset, with a monster, with a burning shadow.



I am sick of writing this poem
but bring the boy. his new name

his same old body. ordinary, black
dead thing. bring him & we will mourn
until we forget what we are mourning

& isn’t that what being black is about?
not the joy of it, but the feeling

you get when you are looking
at your child, turn your head,
then, poof, no more child.

that feeling. that’s black.


think: once, a white girl

was kidnapped & that’s the Trojan war.

later, up the block, Troy got shot
& that was Tuesday. are we not worthy

of a city of ash? of 1000 ships
launched because we are missed?

always, something deserves to be burned.
it’s never the right thing now a days.

I demand a war to bring the dead boy back
no matter what his name is this time.

I at least demand a song. a song will do just fine.


look at what the lord has made.
above Missouri, sweet smoke.

not an elegy for Mike Brown, Danez Smith [x]