On a Hot Night

Harlem, 1929

He leapfrogs the trade
pawns superstition for smokes
lard-loosens jammed shoots
prophet of dusky raiment
& mechanic curls smashes
quart bottles loosens trills
of bootleg miscellany
on a hot night girls of blood-red
lip and money-eye
spin in the cards parlor
boys bring hooch & orchids &
everything goes yellow
a palimpsest of tar & sticky plastic
a ripe rot of mottled tongues
our boy coiled in tenebrous cloak
at the sunrise window
by morning back at his corner
tipping one out
for his dead.

Sun, Suna, Sunaofying

if I split / a word in half, send it // across borders, if it finds / a suffix, and transforms /
to meaning: in my mouth

My Girls & I

& yes i know that stray dogs enter the compound in the dark and sit on the swing & yes i have seen their oblong eyes juiced in meditative silence & yes sometimes i join them

Rippling Through the Dark

Light / traipses through water and water / envelopes my mother’s hands. / How her hands have torqued / my dark body—a kind of light / I’ve never understood