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Danez Smith

Dear White America

By Danez Smith
Kenji Liu

So, that you are always sir, dear sir

By Kenji Liu Ask me again why I am here
with this pine, this wild oyamel,
their great succulence of reason

You, machine lyric
and State, every state,
Ross Gay

A Small Needful Fact

By Ross Gay Is that Eric Garner worked
for some time for the Parks and Rec.
Horticultural Department, which means,
perhaps, that with his very large hands,
Joshua Bennett

Theodicy

By Joshua Bennett When yet another one of your kin falls,
you question God’s wingspan, the architecture
of mercy.
Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Elegy

By Rachel Eliza Griffiths I remember the boys & their open hands. High fives
of farewell. I remember that the birches waved too,
the white jagged limbs turning away from incessant wildfires
Craig Santos Perez

From “understory”

By Craig Santos Perez kai cries
from teething--

how do
new parents
Kelli Stevens Kane

bitter crop

By Kelli Stevens Kane blueberry blackberry as always
bleeding, back road or boulevard,
our boy crowned with baton,
Danez Smith

not an elegy for Mike Brown

By Danez Smith 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
Danez Smith

juxtaposing the black boy & the bullet

By Danez Smith one is hard & the other tried to be
one is fast & the other was faster
one is loud & one is a song
Derrick Weston Brown

Despite

By Derrick Weston Brown Your brown skin is not a bomb.
Your brown skin does not mean bomb.
Though they doctor pictures.
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