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Jeanann Verlee


By Jeanann Verlee In a humble, godless house
you moved through youth like any girl.
Dolls & other toys, yours,
in parts.
Danielle Badra

We are not reconciled to the oppressors who whet their howl on our grief.

By Danielle Badra We are not born to be barons of wealth. We
are soft spoken wordsmiths, not soldiers. We are
not broken by hardship or hate. We are not
John James

Spaghetti Western

By John James In Georgetown, IN, the steel projector reels.
The desert stretches blankly before us, a red
plain constellated with rows of dry mesquite.
Heather Derr-Smith


By Heather Derr-Smith One man said there are hundreds
of delicate articulated bones
in the human head. So don’t let it
get punched. Easier said than done.
Hieu Minh Nguyen


By Hieu Minh Nguyen If things happen
the way they are supposed to
my mother will die before me.
Camisha Jones

My Hair Starts the Revolution

By Camisha Jones What you know bout ballin'
your every fiber into a tight fist,
letting the naps of history
that birthed you unfurl
Destiny O. Birdsong

To the Black Virgin Mary on a Steeple in Greensburg, PA

By Destiny O. Birdsong Or maybe you weren’t. Whenever I’m frightened,
anything can become a black woman in a granite dress:
scaffold for what’s to come: blue lights exploding
like an aurora at the base of the bridge;
Alan King

The Journey

By Alan King The diner's nearly empty
when you both arrive - except for
the six or so other patrons and
a waitress who calls everyone "Hun".
Joshua Jennifer Espinoza

This Is What Makes Us Worlds

By Joshua Jennifer Espinoza Like light but
in reverse we billow.
We turn a corner
and make the hills
Rajiv Mohabir


By Rajiv Mohabir A twist of cotton
daubed in oil
catches flame, an echo
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