CPL Teen Room

In it to Read It

0 notes &

A poem by Macarthur genius grant recipient Terrance Hayes

New Folk

I said Folk was dressed in Blues but hairier and hemped.

After “We acoustic banjo disciples!” Jebediah said, “When

and whereforth shall the bucolic blacks with good tempers

come to see us pluck as Elizabeth Cotton intended?”

We stole my Uncle Windchime’s minivan, penned a simple

ballad about the drag of lovelessness and drove the end

of the chitlin’ circuit to a joint skinny as a walk-in temple

where our new folk was not that new, but strengthened

by our twelve bar conviction. A month later, in pulled

a parade of well meaning alabaster post adolescents.

We noticed the sand-tanned and braless ones piled

In the ladder-backed front row with their boyfriends

first because beneath our twangor slept what I’ll call

a hunger for the outlawable. One night J asked me when

sisters like Chapman would arrive. I shook my chin wool

then, and placed my hand over the guitar string’s wind-

ow til it stilled. “When the moon’s black,” I said. “Be faithful.”

Source: Poetry (March 2008)

Lucky Strike by Stuart Davis

0 notes &

More Maya Please

Awaking in New York

by Maya Angelou

Curtains forcing their will

against the wind,

children sleep,

exchanging dreams with

seraphim. The city

drags itself awake on

subway straps; and

I, an alarm, awake as a

rumor of war,

lie stretching into dawn,

unasked and unheeded.

from Shaker, why Don’t You Sing?

The Complete Collected Poems of Maya Angelou