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Destiny Hemphill

we ask mama-n-em, “where is the motherworld?”

By Destiny Hemphill listen.

it’s in, not at. in the whistle & hiss, the steam of your breath as you chant
we ready (we ready), we comin (we comin) atop of a jail

building in ruins. yes, it’s in your breath & in the never dwindling
kindle of your fingertips as you reach out & touch
Carmin Wong

The Proper Way to Prepare the U.S. Flag

By Carmin Wong Start with something simple: 13 loosely lingering light-hearted lines that eventually morph / into crowbars ★ corps ★ prison cells ★ bylines.
Kyle Dargan

Poem Resisting Arrest

By Kyle Dargan This poem is guilty. It assumed it retained
the right to ask its question after the page

came up flush against its face.
Azia Armstead

Birthday Poem

By Azia Armstead We wait for the show to begin in an open field on a blazing summer night.
Fireworks are most lucent in the blackness of a sky with no sun which
makes me think of blackness as a metaphor, how colors shine brightest
when contrasted against it.
Justice Ameer

when white supremacy kills me

By Justice Ameer when white supremacy kills me
don’t let them scrub my rage from internet
demand i be both angry and righteous
Daria-Ann Martineau

Again

By Daria-Ann Martineau I find myself noticing you again
eight years later,
you coming out of the earth, pale,
erect, shadow over men.
You can’t be buried.
Safia Elhillo

In Memory of Kamau Brathwaite

By Safia Elhillo i sat by the lake & ate five tiny oranges & every strand
of flesh & pith was my teacher
i grew warm & soft in the sun & from this ripening
made a poem to search for my teacher
Noor Ibn Najam

يقبرني to bury me. you take your turn first

By Noor Ibn Najam to become earth’s sugar, to be a seedless
orange offered. to want fruit
to unwind from the concept of sex
Darius Simpson

ma’am, i’m sorry to tell you, your son is d-

By Darius Simpson dangerously good at freeze tag, like ghost good
drenched in red puddles, but on his way
down by the gutter river
Alexis Smithers

[Untitled]

By Alexis Smithers Standing in line, waiting to go into the Library of Congress
a black woman stands two people ahead of me and
a white security guard says to her,
It’s a beautiful day.
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