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Ching-In Chen

Lantern Letter: a Zuihitsu

By 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

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?
Baruch Porras-Hernandez

Ceremonias De La Superviviencia

By 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?
Arisa White

My Dead

By 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
Jessica Jacobs

In a Thicket of Body-Bent Grass

By Jessica Jacobs Arkansas is aspic with last-gasp summer, making running
like tunneling: the trail’s air a gelatin
of trapped trajectories.
Rasha Abdulhadi

Picking up Rocks

By Rasha Abdulhadi daughter of a palestinian that i am,
when i see a bloc of young people holding the street
it seems i was born with a rock in my hand
against a line of police in battle gear—
and i’ve found the world expects that’s who i am.
Shauna M. Morgan

how to make her stay

By Shauna M. Morgan tell her the new fragrance is nice but she doesn’t have to bathe in it
assert that sarcasm is a talent

tell her that her salwar or lappa is weird and take her to the mall for khakis
do so until she stops wearing that colorful garb
Yona Harvey

The River Wanderer

By Yona Harvey There was a river turned to Goddess. Was kin to river turned to Flame.

As a child I dreamt that river. None could keep me from that vision.

They lowered me in the Mighty Waters. Lowered me in the Creek of Shame.
Raquel Salas Rivera

desahucio / eviction

By Raquel Salas Rivera los blancos en sus casas lloran
porque han tenido que desahuciar a sus huéspedes.
los apellidos y las propiedades lloran
porque han quemado los títulos de propiedad
de los gusanos.

***
the whites cry in their houses
because they’ve had to evict the guests.
the last names and the properties cry
because they’ve burned
the worms’ deeds.
Britteney Black Rose Kapri

a reading guide: for white people reading my book

By Britteney Black Rose Kapri don’t sister girl me or giiiiirl me or sis me or girlfriend me or hey bitch me. or any other slang you think me and other Black woman call ourselves when you’re not around.
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