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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
Shira Erlichman The Former Poet Laureate of the United States
wrote an eighty-nine line poem about clouds & I
want to write about clouds but all I can see
is this bruise on the inside of my inner-elbow the needle left
when posing a question about my toxicity level.
Elana Bell What else to call the way the bare branches
I’d bought at the neighborhood bodega
came back to life that winter.
Meg Day In the dangerous years
everyone took lovers
Sheila Black We come at the wrong time of year by a hair
or a week, and the brown birds flying onward,
out of reach. My son tilts his head.
Arisa White Everybody she died another is dead everybody
dead and AIDS of AIDS my dead she is
there are more I know with the same story hiding
lips stitched hesitant to speak of someone you knew
Kit Yan They are giving out Turkeys at the Public Assistance office,
Wrapped in plastic,
The legs folded in, balled for convenience,
You must have had to write your name on a raffle ticket,
I came too late to see the process.
Tara Hardy They call it dissociation.
I call it THE NINE (children)
who live inside me.
Each of them encased
in amber, frozen in a mosquito-pose
Doritt Carroll the first time it happened
i thought i was being strangled
four fingers compressing each side of my throat
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.