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Two Poems


American Sonnet for My Past and Future Assassin

Probably, ghosts are allergic to us. Our uproarious
Breathing & ruckus. Our eruptions, our disregard
For dust. Small worlds unwhirl in the corners of our homes
After death. Our warriors, weirdos, antiheroes, our sirs,
Sires, our sighers, sidewinders & whiners, winos,
And wonders become dust. I know a few of the dead.
I remember my sister's last hoorah. I remember
The horror of her head on a pillow. For a long time
The numbers were balanced. The number alive equal
To the number in graves. After a very long time
The bones become dust again & the dust
After a long time becomes dirt & the dirt becomes soil
And the soil becomes grain again. This bitter earth is a song
Clogging the mouth before it is swallowed or spat out.


American Sonnet for My Past and Future Assassin

I only intend to send word to my future
Self perpetuation is a war against Time
Travel is essentially the aim of any religion
Is blindness the color one sees under water
Breath can be overshadowed in darkness
The benefits of blackness can seem radical
Black people in America are rarely compulsive
Hi-fivers believe joy is a matter of touching others
Is forbidden the only word God doesn't know
You have to heal yourself to truly be heroic
You have to think once a day of killing your self
Awareness requires a touch of blindness & self
Importance is the only word God knows
To be free is to live because only the dead are slaves


Terrance Hayes

American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin
Penguin


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