August 11: “Status From St. Louis Jail”

“I believe in a low poeisis, a poem that makes itself available to black people first, a poem that does a black work, that does political accompaniment for black people, that is broken and breaks things, that grew up in a storefront church and that will smash the windows of the same liquor store that sold it cigarettes when it was just learning to hold a pencil. I believe in latch key poems written to raise themselves, that know how to talk in tongue to bill collectors and have bus maps memorized. I believe in poems that will drawl and lisp and stutter and stunt and turn up. I believe in poems from Ferguson that mean well but are not well meaning. Yes, I believe in a low poeisis, a poem as comfortable in the preform and the beforehand as it is in the perform and the center stage. I believe in poems that concern themselves with black life, black love, black action, black transformation, black liberation and black continuation.

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