Charleston SC poetry

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our night at zero george

(written about this) we are here for one night but the experience is everlasting. solace drew us in with the dawn and a calm, despite the relentless summer downpour. the dinner was untouched by drama. it was crafted by hands whose passion is cooking; whose love for his family is reflected in food. we were […]

let’s talk about the weather

light follows us wherever we go, no matter how shadowed the mind. but darkness has a sneaky way of taking us over at night and sometimes its sleepy residue remains in the day in spite of the sun’s warm personality and efficient, persistent glow. we sleep through hot nightmares when the only cool air is […]

Inner twined

(commissioned for the Gibbes Museum and Charleston Jazz’ Art of Jazz series. Written specifically about the Betwixt and Between exhibit) You don’t have to look far for signs of connection. floor to ceiling strands of shared air, or sidewalk to sun oxygen, binding our breathing. trees are made up of the tightened tension of sticks […]

Movement’s mother

(inspired by Septima Clark, on what would have been her 120th birthday. Written for the dedication of her historical marker) I. There are spirits among us – ghosts of grassroots movements echoing through our soil. Charleston’s poinsettia was a warrior woman who blossomed despite an unholy city’s unsettled winds. She was light through dark matter, […]

The resolution of wings

(dedicated to the Butterly Book Nook) Here is the place where a community blossoms. Where hope still finds the right amount of air to rise, to spread its wings, defiantly, in the deflating aftermath of a tragedy that grounded us. Here is the place where we will no longer be cocooned in sadness because our […]

empath (bones)

(a poem about lynchings) If the Angel Oak tree could talk, she’d tell us stories we don’t want to hear. Her family has been roped into being the backdrop of racism’s roots, her friends had no choice but to stand, stoic through storms that bore strange fruit. She’d tell you about the relentless weight of […]

on the rocks (2018 Wine + Food festival poem)

in Charleston, we don’t need to be persuaded to party. the shadow of spring is reason enough to take slow sips of liquid sunshine in the predictable newness of January, the unexpected heat of February, the blooming business of March. in Charleston, we sing gospel hymns to gin on holy and humid afternoons to douse […]

wordplay

a poem about … poetry. i read this in classrooms to get students excited about the art form. filmed at burke high school.

(… and you will be beautiful)

There will be a day when I won’t need mirrors because looking into your eyes will be the only reflection I’ll need to see myself.

the work

Some of the mirrors in my mind’s eye are broken. I’ve spent too much time trying to get clean – wiping thumb prints from my face, covering insecurities, fixing my hair, not fixing my mind. But, to deny what makes me beautiful is to deny my mother’s smile, my father’s eyes, my future grandchildren, my […]