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Audre Lorde

Coming together  it is easier to work  after our bodies  meetpaper and penneither care nor profitwhether we write or notbut as your body movesunder my hands  charged and waiting  we cut the leashyou create me against your thighs  hilly with imagesmoving through our word countries  my bodywrites into your fleshthe poemyou make of me. Touching… Continue reading Audre Lorde

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Jackie Wang

Your body next to my body is being rewritten. I hope that’s okay. I dream of you every night and I worry that the more I dream the more I overwrite you, the more I re-write the memory of you. — Jackie Wang, from “The Vernacular of Our Bodies,” The Sunflower Cast a Spell to… Continue reading Jackie Wang

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Hanif Abdurraqib

he says the end isn’t always about what dies and I know I knowor I knew once and now I write about beautiful things like I will never touch a beautiful thing again — Hanif Abdurraqib, from “And What Good Will Your Vanity Be When the Rapture Comes,” Vintage Sadness (Big Lucks Books June 13th… Continue reading Hanif Abdurraqib

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Toni Morrison

There is a loneliness that can be rocked. Arms crossed, knees drawn up, holding, holding on, this motion, unlike a ship’s, smooths and contains the rocker. It’s an inside kind—wrapped tight like skin. Then there is the loneliness that roams. No rocking can hold it down. It is alive. On its own. A dry and… Continue reading Toni Morrison

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Audre Lorde

and nothing says that you must say helloas we pass in the street,but we have known each othertoo well in the darkfor thisand it hurts me when you do not speak. — Audre Lorde, from “The Dozens,” The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde. (W. W. Norton & Company; Reprint edition February 17, 2000) Originally published… Continue reading Audre Lorde

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Yusef Komunyakaa

Safe Subjects How can love healthe mouth shut this way?Say something worth breath.Let is surface, recapitulatehow fat leeches press down gentlyon the sex goddesses eyelids.Let truth have its way with uslike a fishhook holdsto life, holds dearly to nothingworth say -pull it out,bringing with it hard facts,knowledge that the find underboneof hope is also attachedto… Continue reading Yusef Komunyakaa

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Yusef Komunyakaa

Say something about real love.Yes, true love—more thanparted lips, than parted legsin sorrow’s darkroom of potash& blues. Let the brain stumblefrom its hidingplace, from its cell block,to the edge of oblivionto come to itself, sharp-tonguedas a boar’s grin in summer moss — Yusef Komunyakaa, from  “Safe Subjects,” Neon Venacular: New and Selected Poems (Wesleyan University… Continue reading Yusef Komunyakaa

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Audre Lorde

It has rained for five daysrunningthe world isa round puddleof sunless waterwhere small islandsare only beginning to copea young boyin my gardenis bailing out waterfrom his flower patchwhen I ask him whyhe tells meyoung seeds that have not seen sunforgetand drown easily — Audre Lorde, “Coping,” The Collected Poems (W. W. Norton & Company, 1997)

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