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Lauren K. Alleyne

Heaven?

By Lauren K. Alleyne Where does a black girl go
when her body is emptied `
Of her? And her wild voice,
where does it sing its story
Oliver Baez Bendorf

solidarity work :: imperfection

By Oliver Baez Bendorf The new perfection is imperfection.
I’m striving for it in all things great and small.
Stray from the recipe. Hit send. Risk it.
Leave the art a little crooked on the wall.
Jennifer Maritza McCauley

Old Blood

By Jennifer Maritza McCauley Before they tell us how to look
at our kilt brothers' bodies:

Tell them we already know how to see ‘em.
Denice Frohman

The Hour Dylann Roof Sat In The Church

By Denice Frohman By now, you know their names, their cheekbones—
the tender hands they offered when you walked in.

You know the quivering strength of prayer and the art of making God listen.
How faith can summon weary backbones into pyramids.
Tafisha A. Edwards

Your Rapist is on Paid Administrative Leave

By Tafisha A. Edwards 4. Your rapist has elected to continue receiving his bi-weekly paychecks via direct
deposit. Your rapist has elected not to cash out his 401K for fear of incurring
penalties. Your rapist recently called HR to review his health care coverage—
open enrollment will begin in a few short months and coverage options
are changing.
Kyle G Dargan

Natural Causes

By Kyle Dargan Naturally, the gun is purchased from a farm in Virginia—pulled from a bushel of barrels
by a tremorous hand, a young man’s. His other fist proffers sweat-wilted dollars. The
farmer, compensated, keeps his gaze down as to remember nothing of the boy’s face.
Amanda Johnston

Night Hike

By Amanda Johnston The Outdoor Afros guide promises our eyes will adjust.
Moonlight is enough to see the beauty in the dark.
Without entering the woods, I see our blackness
pull the grassy hem over our bodies.
Dawn Lundy Martin

The American middle class ...

By Dawn Lundy Martin The American middle class is screwed again but they don’t know it.
Politics is a gleaming nowhere. Žižek fantasizes about Capitalism’s
inevitable end.
Imani Cezanne

#flyingwhileblack

By Imani Cezanne There is no moment when I am more reminded of my Blackness
than when I am at an airport walking through TSA
The Security Administration
Whose job it is to keep the planes from terrorism
Heidi Andrea Restrepo Rhodes

Til the Taste of Free in Our Mouths (Brown Baby Lullaby)

By Heidi Andrea Restrepo Rhodes Wake. Wake.
These the nights we sing. These the folds,
unborn reverie, ambition marbled mud & shine,
raging anthem born like diamonds out darkest ash & rain
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