My sister Nell and I were standing on the banks of the Duvallis River, waiting for a man to float down it.
The next two hours are the most precious I will ever spend with my father. He is alert and not visibly suffering. Though not a chatterbox, he converses with us all.
It was the last day of school, and I was walking with my dad. . . . Suddenly, he paused, looked at me intently, and said, “Son, you’re a black male, and that’s two strikes against you.” To the general public, anything that I did would be perceived as malicious and deserving of severe punishment, and I had to govern myself accordingly. I was seven years old.
The Sun presents a selection of poems that speak to the subtle and not-so-subtle injustices going on around us. Featuring Cortney Lamar Charleston, Ashley M. Jones, Eve Williams, Anuradha Bhowmik, Hope Wabuke, Marci Calabretta Cancio-Bello, Amy Dryansky, Brionne Janae, Danez Smith, and Brian Gilmore.
Before we was married, we rented a little townhouse in Dallas. My girls was with us. They from my first marriage. Nate come to us when my baby girl was barely a year old. He latched on and took us all like we was his, and I didn’t see all the love in that.
We didn’t know what it was to be desired. We didn’t know what girls’ bodies were supposed to look like. We just knew it was better for us if nothing stuck out too far.