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Split This Rock Announces 2021 Best of the Net Nominations

Split This Rock is delighted to announce six nominations for the 2021 Best of the Net Anthology. Please join us in celebrating these incredible and necessary poems by reading, listening, and sharing. To access the full poems, visit the 2021 Best of the Net special collection within The Quarry: A Social Justice Poetry Database or click the links on the poem titles below.


“Clarification Card: The Spiral (“The cigarette is pretext: smoke rises from within”)" by Hari Alluri
Content Notice: grief, substance dependency, refers to war

"...The trick to becoming / a proper smoker is some small grief / there is no relief from and you know it / so you might as well light something on fire..."


“This Event is For People of Color - Ages 16 and Up” by María Fernanda

"We leave our leather. Finding a spot on Miya’s / living room floor, we untuck our bound things / a borrowed yoga mat, a stretched hair tie, / a borrowed yoga mat, a stretched hair tie, / and a softening tension."


“we ask mama-n-em, 'where is the motherworld?'” by Destiny Hemphill
Content Notice: refers to Black death

"...yes, it’s in your breath & in the never dwindling / kindle of your fingertips as you reach out & touch // the hands of your kindred, the living & your dead, who keep you here"


"Tonight: Rebellious Resistance" by Naomi Ortiz
Content Notice: Refers to ableism

"I am body, breath, machine / close my eyes and inhale -- I exist by defiance / here, on the bus, at the store, on Dr. exam table, sitting at father’s kitchen counter"


"Brecksville, Ohio" by Margo Tamez
Content Notice: Medical Racism; Anti-Indigeneity; Death

"...They ID’d him as a middle-aged / brown Vet / in sweats. // Someone told him to sit down and wait. / Wait to be called. / He followed orders. / He obeyed. // Followed rules.    Did what he was told."


"Hull” by Lisbeth White
Content Notice: Refers to chattel slavery & its legacy

"i pick a small piece     marvel / at its fluff   the resilient     web / as i pull   the bundle apart     but how   it binds / to itself   fibers holding until    a yank / of extreme force    even then / i   have never   felt anything     so / soft   more gentle   than air..."


Image Description: Split This Rock red logo with black text that reads "2021 Best of the Net Nominations" is centered over a gold background with a starburst illustration. Around the words are images of the 6 poets nominated for Best of the Net in circular frames.

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