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H. Melt Whether it’s raining
or snowing, midnight or
you’re awaking from a nap,
working an eight hour shift
or watching reruns,
Ching-In Chen My people – I see you across street, porch people, huddled under brick archway, watching what pours from sky. Wading in water, what circuits it carries – mostly numb, small, what might feel like circuit’s end.
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?
Franny Choi A wall of cops moves like a wall of water on a barge no beauty.
A wall of iron swallows the woman who falls to the ground and keeps
falling. There’s a video. The picture stays intact (again).
It’s not pretty, meaning it’s hard to watch.
Kenneth Carroll III we ride in on the red line
our laces coming undone as we float over fair gates
until we fall into a night
with everything our tongues have been yearning for
Baruch Porras-Hernandez at the movies my eye on the Exit sign
on the aisles the doorways the space
between the seat in front of me and my legs
how far could I crawl
before I die?
Matt Daly Everywhere I go, people are shouting
at one another, people are shaking
their fists at one another. Everywhere
I go, I see someone knapping
an edge to a stone.
Bianca Lynne Spriggs Woman,
I get it.
We are strangers,
but I know the heart is a hive
and someone has knocked yours
from its high branch in your chest
Joseph Green The last time I saw you alive
I wish I would’ve talked ugly to you.
Said, “Put the straw down. No,
I don’t want to take another line,
I should be writing them.
Seema Reza When the soldier knocks on your door, billet book in hand, move aside
to let him enter. He will wipe his feet, remove his hat
(you’ll learn to call it a cover)
he will be polite, place his rifle by the door