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Christmas letters written,/ then destroyed #poem

By | December 8, 2017

Underneath this day, another
The way morning – shang –
sits on top of afternoon
What is past is
what we see –
Speculation as to how long this war will last.
Con Cater says 3 months. Ethel Taylor says 12 months.
I say three years.
The pages fill. Each day a blank.
Then, my stomach –
moldy flour,
wanting news from home, and
a body is what we bring,
what we …

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Do we and our words have any effect/ on what the Fates sew? #poem

By | December 1, 2017

Evidence and Inquiry
It was an ordinary October afternoon,
the sky dimmed by clouds that filled
the valley and stripped it of all color,
the sun a rueful smile peeking through.
Inside, drabness total as an eclipse:
the concrete block, lead paint, dust
and greenish light of our classroom.
You and I were there, and Anne as well,
wearing a large hat and enveloped in
her cloud of thoughts. Bob was droning on
when Howard overrode …

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O the mornings I wasted/ Reading about how to give birth #poem

By | November 24, 2017

This matzah ball soup
Reminds me of my grandmother
I’m so close to her here in Brooklyn city of her birth
Darling as she called everyone
Let’s be sentimentalists together
And forget about her personality disorder
Forget her in the attic on St Marks Avenue
Thinking her baby was a bouquet of flowers
Instead regard the mama bird
Feeding her openmouthed chicks
Who is the worm I am the …

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My room was a palace of stickers/ & small stuffed toys #poem

By | November 17, 2017

*This poem includes text in italics from “Drug War on Doorsteps All Over Ciudad Juárez,” by Stephen Holden and “Ciudad Juárez, a Border City Known for Killing, Gets Back To Living,” by Damien Cave, both published in The New York Times.
Natalie Scenters-Zapico is the author of The Verging Cities (Center for Literary Publishing 2015) and Lima :: Limón (Copper Canyon Press, forthcoming). She has won …

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I was part of his vision of a wind-whipped Schwinn #poem

By | November 10, 2017

It was a beginning like any other which isn’t
quite the way it was. With beginnings,
where to start? The house that was my first
was a house that Daddy brought to Virgil
atop a flatbed truck. He made his boys fix
it to the foundation, then do whatever else
was necessary to create a kind of permanence.
I wasn’t there then. Then I was, driving Daddy
through the old neighborhood where the …

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You & me knew/ this would happen eventually #poem

By | November 3, 2017

We cross the Vincent Thomas bridge
in our Hyundai Santa Fe. We’re on our way
to my grandparents’ house
& then the market to get husks for the tamales.
Our car begins to shake
& the ground beneath seems to wiggle.
It is time for the bridge to collapse
after 83 years. Cars begin careening
off, some hang over the edge like they’re about
to go skydiving but not quite ready to jump. Some …

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Could it be jubilant/ to come apart? #poem

By | October 27, 2017

Stitch up the trees,
tripping over
the end of time.
Could it be jubilant
to come apart?
Earth to fire to air
in a brilliant instant,
nuclear alchemy
splitting the bone.
I try to remind myself
how petty we are
in the face of life’s evaporation.
Captured by tides:
resistance // embrace.
An ocean growing slowly between us.
Spouting from secret wells,
glimpses of terror
at 2:30 p.m.: will you leave will you
love will you believe in me even now.
These small stakes …

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I dream about you during the work week #poem

By | October 20, 2017

I dream about you during the work week with teddy bears in my mouth &
you with a sword impossible to own. The second sentence is love isn’t
loving anyone for less than your entire life if you want your life to last that
long. We come together for the sake of not knowing what else to do. The
words are the ones, along with the sounds, that define …

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My hands are frostbitten, his bear the burns from last summer #poem

By | October 13, 2017

His ardor turned into an antelope-shaped ice sculpture, its taste and shape memorialized
at film festivals all over Spain. Hers fossilized into ambivalent scorn, trapped under a notebook in Arkansas.
Whenever you wish to, you may conjure me. If I were little beside these digital images,
serving as half-erased traces of whatever latest—or oldest—interpretation you attempt to
inscribe in pixilated ink.
Global landscapes are not altered alone, or via …

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We heard the region was a rainshadow, where mountains/ caught each passing cloud #poem

By | October 6, 2017

Jordan Nakamura was born and raised in Hawaii and lives in Los Angeles. His work has been published in The Curator.