“what the dead know by heart”

“what the dead know by heart”

by Donte Collins

lately, when asked how are you, i 
respond with a name no longer living

➢ ➣ ➢

Rekia, Jamar, Sandra

➢ ➣ ➢

i am alive by luck at this point, i wonder
often: if the gun that will unmake me
is yet made, what white birth

➢ ➣ ➢

will bury me, how many bullets, like a 
flock of blue jays, will come carry my black
to its final bed, which photo will be used

➢ ➣ ➢

to water down my blood, today i did 
not die and there is no god or law to
thank. the bullet missed my head

➢ ➣ ➢

and landed in another. today, i passed
a mirror and did not see a body, instead
a suggestion, a debate, a blank

➢ ➣ ➢

post-it note there looking back. i
haven’t enough room to both rage and 
weep. i go to cry and each tear turns
to steam. I say

➢ ➣ ➢

I matter and a ghost
white hand appears
over my mouth

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I Held a Shelley Manuscript

I Held a Shelley Manuscript   

by Gregory Corso

My hands did numb to beauty
as they reached into Death and tightened!

 ~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

O sovereign was my touch
upon the tan-inks’s fragile page!

 ~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Quickly, my eyes moved quickly,
sought for smell for dust for lace
for dry hair!

 ~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

I would have taken the page
breathing in the crime!
For no evidence have I wrung from dreams–
yet what triumph is there in private credence?

 ~ ❇ ✾ ❈ ✾ ❇ ~

Often, in some steep ancestral book,
when I find myself entangled with leopard-apples
and torched-skin mushrooms,
my cypressean skein outreaches the recorded age
and I, as though tipping a pitcher of milk,
pour secrecy upon the dying page.

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After Auschwitz

After Auschwitz 

by Anne Sexton

Anger,
as black as a hook,
overtakes me.
Each day,
each Nazi
took, at 8: 00 A.M., a baby
and sauteed him for breakfast
in his frying pan.

~ ❇ ✥ ✦ ✥ ❇ ~

And death looks on with a casual eye
and picks at the dirt under his fingernail.

~ ❇ ✥ ✦ ✥ ❇ ~

Man is evil,
I say aloud.
Man is a flower
that should be burnt,
I say aloud.
Man
is a bird full of mud,
I say aloud.

~ ❇ ✥ ✦ ✥ ❇ ~

And death looks on with a casual eye
and scratches his anus.

~ ❇ ✥ ✦ ✥ ❇ ~

Man with his small pink toes,
with his miraculous fingers
is not a temple
but an outhouse,
I say aloud.
Let man never again raise his teacup.
Let man never again write a book.
Let man never again put on his shoe.
Let man never again raise his eyes,
on a soft July night.
Never. Never. Never. Never. Never.
I say those things aloud.

~ ❇ ✥ ✦ ✥ ❇ ~

I beg the Lord not to hear.

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