While watchinga moviewith a lovely, unyielding,Well-founded black femaleCharacter, the ten-year-oldSays, Mom, I loveHow fierceBlack people are.He's read thirty-six graphicNovels in two days.(I don't know howTo parent him.I only know howTo protect him.)My intestines gorge red.Warm. I smile at him. PretendI don't feel this green leaf of relief, a leafBecause he's managed somehowNot to hate himself. Me.A girl's neck was slitYesterday. Everyday.We watch her dieOn the platform.
Copyright © 2018 by Robin Coste Lewis
All rights reserved.
Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission.
Since its founding 1953, The Paris Review has been America’s preeminent literary quarterly, dedicated to discovering the best new voices in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The Review’s renowned Writers at Work series of interviews is one of the great landmarks of world literature. Hailed by the New York Times as “the most remarkable interviewing project we possess,” the series received a George Polk Award and has been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. With the December 2016 redesign of the Review’s website, the complete digital archive of everything we’ve published since 1953 is available to subscribers. In November 2017, the Review gave voice to nearly sixty-five years of writing and interviews with the launch of its first-ever podcast, featuring a blend of classic stories and poems, vintage interview recordings, and new work and original readings by the best writers of our time.