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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 In Georgetown, IN, the steel projector reels.
The desert stretches blankly before us, a red
plain constellated with rows of dry mesquite.
Paulette Beete Orlando Jones, a black actor, douses himself
in a bucket of bullets. I flinch. Bullet against
brown skin even without the bruised and
busted aftermath is no easy thing to bear.
Sharon Olds They put roofs over our heads.
Ours was made of bent tiles,
so the edge of the roof had a broken look,
Dan Vera A is for apple.
B is for banana – treasure fruit of the tropics
which replaced the apple on the breakfast table of Victorian America.
C is for Carmen Miranda smiling
Solmaz Sharif Lovely dinner party. Darling CASUALTIES and lean
sirloin DAMAGE of the COLLATERAL sort.
Extended my LETTER OF OFFER AND ACCEPTANCE
to the DESIRED INTERNAL AUDIENCE, reaching
Ilya Kaminsky I watched a sergeant aim, the deaf boy take iron and fire in his mouth—
his face on the asphalt,
that map of bone and opened valves.
It’s the air. Something in the air wants us too much
Sonia Sanchez There are women sailing the sky
I walk between them
They who wear silk, muslin and burlap skins touching mine
They who dance between urine and violets
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.
Saida Agostini and the joke is right there, ready, shuddering
and alive - rife with promise. there are so many
paths that have been worn out for a quick
easy laugh: tyler perry strutting with a gun and wig,