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Charleston SC poetry

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The arrogance of the moon

the moon is unmoving. frozen and self-centered in the atmosphere. he’s proud of the fact that he can be steady among a chaos of satellites while meditating above clouds and rubbing elbows with stars. he’s stoic. watching egoic people who are steady impressed with excesses, like high definition drones that give us a limited view […]

Break Bread (commissioned poem for the Wine + Food festival)

We’ve come here to feast on the flavors of the Lowcountry: To breathe in the ocean’s salty safe haven, where serenity and shellfish are served every day. To learn about the after taste of our history’s fresh lessons, built on the backs of West Africans. To appreciate farmers and fishermen whose passion feed the entire […]

A woman’s hands are the hands of God

(written for the Women’s March in Charleston, South Carolina) I am a feminist because our bodies are tattooed with the fingerprints of mother nature. I am a feminist because a woman’s hands hold the spirit of comfort the way the sun carries the burden of warmth. I am a feminist because my mother was with […]

the last word

one day, someone will write the last poem about injustice and it will become our new national anthem. only history books will hold the memory of hatred and museums will be built for the artifacts of our awakening. one day, someone will have the last conversation about politics because we realized there were problems that […]


the word “black,” by definition, means “the absence of light.” but I am much more than a shadow. yes, sometimes blackness is the darkness that haunts unenlightened minds and sometimes people talk about me as if I am a cold, night sky without the spark of a bonfire. but, being black, by definition, is luminary […]

Negative zero: a poem about fear

I look for pennies from heaven when my spirit’s balance is low. signs of secret treasures that reveal themselves even on roads that are paved with the dirt of depression. my hands have been held to the sky, cupping air like money, trying to fill my lungs with the wealth of the world so that […]

brotherhood / after you left the hospital …

(from the tiny poems series) let’s have a flashback, to when our lives seemed carefree, when our world was simply a walk or a bike ride toward each weekend like unwritten stanzas in an endless poem, when there was nothing to write about except liquid summers and dried-up mornings, when my beard had no traces […]


God help men’s eyes, who can look at a person and only see an object. Parts instead of a whole, a drop of water instead of an ocean. Women plant roots where men lay concrete. Communities of trees surround us. A forest of human growth, cut down with a single look. Maybe, because I’m married, […]

the pulse (part 2)

(spoken word poem. part two of the pulse) Charleston, where church steeples and cranes look over us and multi-colored houses house live-in servants. where fast-rising hotels rise above slow-moving clouds that cast floods on the corner of America Street. where parades of one color get one day to celebrate then hide in the shadows of […]

eclectic cafe, one week after poetry night

(from the tiny poems series) this time last week, the room had no echoes. silence was the night’s scorned lover as poetry spilled through each crack of the floorboards. each word painted the walls with dark hues, black love, bright light, the blues. this time last week, we were open to each other. wrapped in […]