Derek Walcott – The Light of the World

Derek Alton Walcott (January 23, 1930 – March 17, 2017) “Zion-ah,                I’ve got to have Zion-ah,                I’ve got to have Zion-ahFor the rain is falling” —Bob Marley Marley was rocking on the transport’s stereoand the beauty was humming the choruses quietly.I could see where the lights on the planes of her cheekstreaked and defined them, if this …

Alejandro Escudé – Bed Sheets (Moving Out After Separation)

Alejandro Escudé I wanted my soul out of the house, too.So, I took all my diaries—twenty or so,from the past twenty years. And I slipped theminto the recycling bin. I took all my photos,baby, childhood, adolescence, college years,and trashed those, too. I took my blood pressure reader,and I took the white carnival mask I bought …

Ajay Kumar – An Index Of Visitors

Ajay Kumar I’ve seen something like this somewhere, all the time.white, black & red the first colors. as we enter november,the weather turns december. as it was june, it was also may.remember, all the buildings blurring by to the next station.remember the index of visitors, the middle-finger ring-fingers,singers whose songs were just extended foreplays.an old …

Nikki Giovanni – My First Memory (Of Librarians)

Nikki Giovanni (June 07, 1943 -) This is my first memory:A big room with heavy wooden tables that sat on a creaky       wood floorA line of green shades—bankers’ lights—down the centerHeavy oak chairs that were too low or maybe I was simply       too short              For me to sit in and readSo my first book was always big In …

Oliver de la Paz – In Defense of Small Towns

Oliver de la Paz When I look at it, it’s simple, really. I hated life there. September,once filled with animal deaths and toughened hay. And the smellsof fall were boiled-down beets and potatoesor the farmhands’ breeches smeared with oil and dieselas they rode into town, dusty and pissed. The radio stationsplit time between metal and …

Cindy King – When Your Mother Asks If You’re Seeing Anyone

Cindy King It’s tough to find a cardiologist who datespatients from the Ward of Cracked Hearts, butthere’s always the bariatric surgeonwho thinks you could drop a few pounds. If it’s too latefor the death row inmate, try the child predator, you toocould date the would-be senator, or even the President of the United States.If you …

Danusha Laméris – Twin Strangers

Danusha Laméris For $3.99, the website promises me the opportunityto find my duplicate, my doppelgӓnger,my double. Someone half-way around the world,or right next door, who wears the same pointed eyebrows,aquiline (according to the diagram) noseon a brown and almost-oval face. “Everyone,” they say“has seven look-alikes.” Each night in bedI sip my cup of tea and …