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Kyle Carrero Lopez

Torricelli

By Kyle Carrero Lopez In 1994, U.S. Senator Bob Torricelli (D-New Jersey) introduced the Cuban Democracy Act, designed to “wreak havoc on that island.”

I’ll wreak havoc on that island I’ll ravage

that island I’ll plunder

that island see torn asunder that island
Gbenga Adesina

PARADISE

By Gbenga Adesina North of the country, a road led to the desert.
Dust was the first sentence. The Sahara
was a white darkness in the distance,
and beyond it the glint of a Great Lake.
We drove past fields of ginger and wild purple onions.
There was a public garden and a ring of white egrets
around still water.
Chrysanthemum

Alias

By Chrysanthemum Scheduling a follow-up with my PCP, I prepare
for disaster. Inevitable as flood, I hush a moniker
kept in confidence, wager my informed consent

for a Hancock granting passage. Gates are flimsy
metaphors. It’s more of a worn-down levee, dike
ready to burst without notice.
Sahar Muradi

What Fell, and Other Ways of Seeing August 15th

By Sahar Muradi K says what fell?
R says prices have shot up
I says our people did not fall
M says we have so much more to lose if we leave
R says the gardens are still awash in green
N says he was arrested
S says he is still dubbing films, just quietly
R says a mother sits in the road shrieking at every passing car
Dare Williams

Thirteen Meeting My Father For The First and Last Time

By Dare Williams At the Best Western, he arrived in a Ford
with its burned-out back. We spent the day
driving while he pointed at ruins
of cars gutted on the dead lawns.
Glenn Shaheen

Herring

By Glenn Shaheen Somebody suggested I buy pickled
Herring in wine sauce— it didn't sound
Like a bad idea, all these conversations
Mired in capital's sloughed-off flesh.
Khadijah Queen

Since the pandemic is over

By Khadijah Queen Let’s skip past the facts, uncounted
deaths, pretend the seas of free faces soothe &
vaccines can protect us, you, me, my loves, stuck home
since early 2020, but I saw the slide
happening sooner, got sick mid-fall
2019 on the plane home from London, locked myself in
my cold bedroom so no one else would suffer,
held my sick breath under blankets &
heated ginger & honey & lemon & garlic &
clove & cayenne concoctions on the stove for six days.
Recovery took the rest of October & November too
but I kept my family well & since the pandemic is
over, I’m often the only masked one
left in any room
Lara Atallah

meat market

By Lara Atallah after Lebanon, a country with one of the worst economic crises since the nineteenth century

the price of bread has gone up again. throngs of cars
slouch towards shuttering gas stations. the currency, a farce

with each swing of the gavel, numbers
soar. fifty thousand pounds by day’s end,

what’s another ten thousand? or a hundred thousand?
a hundred and forty thousand pounds to the dollar?
Gisselle Yepes

I DO NOT KNOW HOW TO MOURN MEN WHO HAVE NOT TRIED TO KILL ME

By Gisselle Yepes And in twenty-five days, we make a year without
Tio Freddy alive, without his flesh inhaling
cigarettes or bud once filled with wind
like that winter after Wela died, the only winter
we got with him here, we walked
every time we linked
downstairs to smoke, to watch the trees
mirror our empty.
Allison Adelle Hedge Coke

Education (excerpt from “Look at This Blue”)

By Allison Adelle Hedge Coke Your arm was twisted, bone exposed
face past point of wet stained,
fledgling fell there
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