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Above Average

By Lindsay Vaughn Women who are not ready we have our own ways

we take pills lie in our lovers’ beds

curled like blades of grass we wait for the writhing wind

that aches and rocks our slender bodies they whisper
Persis M. Karim

Ways to Count the Dead

By Persis M. Karim Take their limbs strewn about the streets—
multiply by a thousand and one.

Ask everyone in Baghdad who has lost
Shailja Patel

from “Offering”

By Shailja Patel sing history
back onto itself, sing tearing
whole again, sing altered
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
Tess Taylor

Eighteenth Century Remains

By Tess Taylor The ridge a half mile down from Monticello.
A pit cut deeper than the plow line.
Archaeologists plot the dig by scanning
Kenji Liu

Elegy for Kimani Gray

By Kenji Liu Sharp tenure of boots in this callow country
grown from open skulls. A raw harvest of bullet casings
arranged in a perfect ring around you,
Heather Holliger

Margins

By Heather Holliger She and I, our silences,
hesitations--at the grocery store,
in the taxi, on the street.
Solmaz Sharif

Mess Hall

By Solmaz Sharif Your knives tip down
in the dish rack
of the replica plantation home
Cathy Linh Che

Split

By Cathy Lihn Che I see my mother at thirteen
in a village so small,
it's never given a name.
Deema K. Shehabi

Migrant Earth

By Deema K. Shehabi I could tell you that listening is made for the ashen sky,
and instead of the muezzin's voice, which lingers
like weeping at dawn,
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