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Dasha Kelly Hamilton

Hope is a Bruise

By Dasha Kelly Hamilton Paintball pellets batter shoulders
and thighs at 190 miles per hour
I count the purplish bruises and
smile at the post vision of us toasting
Tobias Wray

Music Arises from Component Parts or The Dream of a Clarinet

By Tobias Wray Once done,
my father pulled
the instrument apart.
Janice Lobo Sapigao

Bill Pay

By Janice Lobo Sapigao we don’t know how to pay the bills on time
and we don’t know the password to your bank account

& in all of our languages I understand why you stacked
linens and face towels and rubber bands and plastic bags

in drawers and hallway closets
everything filled to the brim
Maricielo Ampudia Gutiérrez

DREAMers Mark Themselves

By Maricielo Ampudia Gutiérrez With each finger, I pressed on black ink, and one by one placed them on the transmitting screen. Following instruction, I rolled each finger, left to right, and slow—every quarter inch of skin recorded. On the display, perfect fingerprints glowing.
Kyle Dargan

Remedial Heteronormativity

By Kyle Dargan “Man-law” I first violate at age ten—
my wandering fingers not appeased by picking
through my cousin’s video
game cartridges, Sports Illustrateds.
Nicole Homer

The shortest prayer I was ever taught was

By Nicole Homer no: what other name could a god have:

I named my son after my dead
grandfathers: blood and not blood

gather around the bent-corner Kodak
altar:
Reuben Jackson

Kelly Recalls 1963

By Reuben Jackson I still call
The year 1963
Season of Nightmares
After Medgar Evers
Was killed I
Would lie awake
And wait for
My uncle Joe
To get home
Hakim Bellamy

El Paso Uno

By Hakim Bellamy No one woke up, that Saturday, mourning. / No one woke up that Saturday morning with intentions of becoming a back to school vigil. / No one woke up not expecting to finish out a sophomore year...that had barely be- // gun.
Lupe Mendez

Un tornillo en el corazón - after @jacobsoboroff

By Lupe Mendez don’t even know where to start.
you notice when you walk into the shelter — no joke —
a new war.
Gabriel Ramirez

Before going to the Barbershop

By Gabriel Ramirez I gotta call my barber Eric to
let him know I’m pullin’ up. Yo hello?
Yea yea who this? ahhhh yo what up homie?
How you been kid?
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