Monday, August 28, 2017


charged with a sheen of obscene   armor      then     leaning  on   then huddled in a gazebo  along  the boston  commons                  I      Ma  a   fa         I      strewn   across   the  spine     of  a   stallion       locked    in    all  time    with       the    pale     man      and      then     when          I  ejected     him       running    through    his    dreams      as  the tender  nymph      in     visions      unhallucinated   hallelujah     at   the   pew   stump     which   stunk    of     cotton   leather     tears    and    ham hocked  collards            it    was   a crime    to   call   them     dead   birds,         accuracy     a   form   of  murder             that    I   still   want   you     and     I    want    you    to    want     me   too          dirty     hallelujah       you     cuddling    with   the   flood     in    solar  plexus   orange  rubber      knees    up     shoulders    back   chin   stacked     on      saturn’s     rings      and   pressing   for daisies     

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Dear Babylon,

When mom fell in love with Dick Gregory I tightened   my  eyes   and   pictured  a sled  in   the  desert. Her in the sled. Me with the water. Voices like sheets of ice or edie sedgwick biting warhol’s neck til red soup commercial  showroom   warm with iodized salt.  I’m all about the sea catching slave bills on the walls of these museum mansions. I’m always the leader   the  one who casts   the heaping  net  of reckless judgment  to say   get   away    get  better   get  a  way I respect.  Heckle the mirror of yesterday into a confession.  Of what? What should it confess? This used to be a minstrel balcony before Eleanor Roosevelt read poetry from it, the sicilian tour guide reminds me of every failed hunt, every wild urge  Get it, gurl. I might have said, to the mother, lovingly repelled and counting melted freckles that amounted to wounded suns. How’d I get so ruthless? How’d the edge get this close? Chuck D said nobody is safe when he strangled William Buckley on that desert sled. I promise I rather be deserted than situated opposite a rehearsed pledge of human faithfulness. Stevie’s fulfillingness plays and balloons pop right on the sand, and pop mutiny,  righteous and shrill, I’m better than this,  I promise I’m better   than   this,  he  promises.  Don’t look at the eclipse don’t touch its sizzling driftless  scissor  burn. That      tolerance  is   reckless    haughty    upcycled    crest   of  lost or overworn   love.   I can’t   stand  the  way  she sucks  fruit    not  my mom   this other woman    meant   to  be  a friend    I can’t    stand   her  voice  on entering  a new   room   and the way  it pitches  up in search of attention and acceptance,   and anyone  who tries  to be cute, I can’t stand them.     And the man  I   love    I want   him  to   adjust  his shoulders    and become  Malcolm X or Miles before  he hit.  Tie around the elbow.  Me on my knees in front of him, not in supplication but  in supply  and demand and  aching oneness.    And as for  the framed bill of sale of a slaveboy called “Mink”  on the wall at this  castle   we toured   like   hungry  mice,  I can’t  stand us. Our  famine    our    dumb   hunger/   I’m  using my stomach muscles   to   sit   coldly   on the  hood  of   an   eagle   and  heal   my perfect   heart.   Here’s  where  I start   to stammer     here’s   where the plan  to murder   false intentions    arrived  at while  on my back  with legs  spread  in   happy  baby,    squeals  like  a  victim        I am not the victim  here      I know one thing from another    I can  soften   my    eyes   and  look   up                           I  can   ask  the five  men   pointing  to heaven  why   they killed  their  brother         but I know   they  think     by  now     for   love             I can   soften    my   eyes     I can   burn   the bible    while   I recite     it      I can be   that  unfussy    I can shrug  instead of boast  or  resist     but  I won’t    not  for nothin

Friday, August 18, 2017

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Maafa to Herself

God talk now             I’ve   overtold the story  to this point and I’ve lost where it was       that we were   at   

   the   question             is   treacherous        you  up ?   banal allure  of  a trifling...   the   leather skin,     preternatural     whatever   history    we   have left  :   racks  on  racks   on    racks       as   yet        the   part  I    left  out  until   yesterday     the   sturdy   and   dazed   part  I  left  town   about       the part   where   she  held  my  carriage   my   crested bassinet  or dangled  it    above   moving   Sunset boulevard  traffic     screaming   fuck  you    at  every  passing      baffled    go    by     vehicle    and    sobbing           Maafa,  you come    all   the   far  way  back    from  chattanooga   for   that  slow    yellow   thrill     or     was    it   fast           to  the   point   where     by   the   time   we got   back   to the   car     and   she paused  with  unlocked   doors   to   check    the   map     the  two  bright  black  men   with    happy   guns  who  got  in    and drove us   around   yelling   how   come   you have these  black   babies    screaming   how   come    you   got these     frayed  saddles   for    saviors     you’ve    got  money?      you’ve  got money!       And   lifted   the  white  Chevy   out from under   us      those  beautiful  thieves   who  saved  our  souls     that    night       and  I   never    got   to  thank  them     or   sensed   the  tension   between   two   modes  of survival   that  their shy guns   and   me   and mom, she   drunker than  ever, us  huddled   on the sidewalk  outside  the police  station    gates     that  night         alleviated      There is  nothing    anyone     can     take    from      me      There  is nothing    I  can’t   have         But all   this  having   has  demanded equal  wanting        How  much  I must   have     wanted      a  bright  black   honor   in the front   seat    to  drive   us   on    home    that    evening    A safeplace  mistaken   for    rage      that   perfect    seeping      night       when   violence    wasn’t   a crime   but an  intervention    on    my behalf      a    mis   en  scene    angry   gods  sent  to save  us       There     is    nothing    anyone     can   take  from   me     There is  nothing   I can’t  have      They   went   to jail     they   ended   up   behind   bars     walking   muscular   circles    in   a  square    cage        I   wonder   if   they   remember        my   prayer    my   prayer    my  prayer     my  prayer     my    prayer     

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Radio Shack Closing

Another black hose down slow snake so down so clean whip stains with machine aim meaning at a fuzzy frenzied mangle of tone blown through silver afro roman protest hymn couldn’t be so sure it was Maa fa ‘s pastoral but you mumbled she’s a pastor in the checkout line over a chorus of machines clutzing paper toward its quota what ruptured franchise told of deafening scooting ears towards the weathered ledge of hearsay or the banal heresy of craving Riri’s rabid didn’t I tell you that I was a savage mama snorted white wishbone hash could have passed for the matted tofu in my lunch pail while I did the Cabbage Patch in the middle of an abandoned electronics store and all the screens wore me for selling, mama in the corner snorting staticy coke off the broken one and waiting for Willie Hutch to come over to get over / to crush and distill her into a fine pearlescent powder he could wear in public like the sun   tumbling isotope of mulatto indifference so aloof   so vigilant         so trapped in hints  everything must go   so mating dance whimper come calamitously close to Johnny Cash husking the molten propaganda into a pace meant to ruin enthusiasm with pleasure

The addicts had it all    the stereos and their barren roll call/ the rollerblades and the swtichblades and the rebel belle rolling out like an ancient scroll counting to eight over and over    the way a circle  reaches   she  held out for them

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Thursday, August 3, 2017

I’ve come to get what’s mine

Can you talk about the mineral industry  ?  Leave the caution tape off the ghetto with the loaded   habanero and area code soldiers?   Can you lead me   over    my feet are taped and bleeding   can we    coach the yankee money   into  hysterical pillars   of   road shoulder  red tethered to tricks we be turning   and turning  and     it   hurts   this   slickness    the way  his fast ribs go cripple   in a row of hazardous   colloidal  …       jonesing  I’m   jonesing and    Joan keeps disappearing …  My babyfather found her bones in the basement of the building he was gutting for the local developers  for minimum  wage   for  say   we  fight their war  with our days so great  we become    its wages  its  sable  toned  booty      booty  for days     for      cobwebs   hobble-toned cleopatra  and  a fat  truck passing  back and forth   in handcuffs    and brought them to me in handcuffs     and he brought her to me   stranded  in   roses and cufflinks   her  bones  he’d  spent  swan  days  scraping as  cement  off bricks   wandered into the center  with Crispus Attucks     mama   did you tuck  him  in     the  harbor    like a  barber  or   a funky  singing boat   or  let him   float   on      home  ?      Where  was  Joan  and where was Mrs. Jones     I  swear    if  she   keeps disappearing   in the middle   of  the dream    Ima   turn mean   like that   one time       Ima  mean your   time   is  rubbed into her  blood  and dangling  from the redemption  of black betty’s   body    on   lease    on   less    on   Lisa Bonet  and Mickey Rooney  tumbling around on a filthy  mattress      got stuck  together   so  violent   with hesitation we    swung   braced   in the   tongues of   cicadas    almost forgot   which   one   you    was     such  was  the   curse  of  reappearing      such    was  the mercy