From Love Poems

Honoring the writing of Black artists.

love poems: rivers and trees (for alton)

i think i love a ghost or a man or a man who may be ghost tomorrow that is to say i love he whose skin is worth its weight it is gold. it is black. or maybe his skin is the grim reaper’s shadow maybe i am in love with death’s shadow and i…

love poems: tilted crown

one black boys rap about their dick size how they’ll bust this pussy wide open like the .45 that killed his best friend skull bust wide open brain matter on ground a mind is a terrible thing to waste hard to get out of concrete he can’t sleep at night visions of it haunt him…

love poems: amuzu (part one)

friends, neighbors, countrymen lend me your eardrums this is the story of my father may his life be long part one my father is a street boy never had shit grew up in voodoland will put a hex on you thirty-six siblings because his father liked to spread his seed. this is what farmers do remember,…

James Harrison: Untitled

  What I love most about working with the younger generation is being able to learn from their honest and earnest perspectives. Listen to James as he questions color politics and understanding history within the black community. Untitled: this is supposed to be our month but why do we have to celebrate our history once a month, once a year at one time and that’s only for the ones that notice i never wanted to come off offensive but blacks need more than just one month to be remembered this is just compensation for the one twelfth of the year…

love poems: gold dust

my body is Africa men want to discover their roots through my waters so they tell me, ‘girl, i’ll make you weep for me.’ ‘girl, i’ll make you wet for me.’ they want to colonize my body but my flesh is my own my soul belongs to me my mouth is full of diamonds use your hands to dig into my earth your hands were meant to dig into my earth you will fight to say you belong to me wear me on fingers and necks and teeth cannot lick lips without tasting me i make these niggas remember they’re…

Love Poems: Mango

i wrote this while i ate a mango with my right hand i licked the juices that ran down my arm my mouth was full of yellow fruit and i imagined this is how your skin would taste if i brushed my lips against it how sweet it is i bite deeper into the flesh, peel the skin with my teeth this is how my mother taught me to eat a mango. this is how her mother taught her to eat a mango. this is how Liberia taught us to eat a mango. to the bone. sitting down. close to earth.…

Love Poems: For the Women We Don’t March For

sister i call your name three times to let the ancestors know they should make room for you you are coming home you have become another picture that will be added to our altars of grief we will pray to you and ask what this life is for black woman, you gave birth to this world and is it not the African way to carry our children on our backs? how do you not break with so much weight? how much more of your blood will they ask for? how much of your pain will they ignore? your body has been…

Love Poems: For Akuvi

my mother my sweet, warm mother. her dark skin glows with years of wisdom and sorrow my sweet, foreign mother Monrovia’s girl my strong mother thick bodied but gentle long fingers crooked and softly withered by labor and time i want to weep while i lay in her lap we will not always have these moments she will return to God she has never belonged to me but i have always been hers she has taught me to work until my fingers bleed to work through a bleeding heart to pray to God when the dawn comes and in the…

Love Poems: Vanity

you once said something about being a reflection of me if that is the case then you’ve shown me i am beautiful black and proud in you i see how lonely and sad and selfish i am how strong and full of hope i am how small i feel how i carry my wounds like crosses to Calvary and call out my Holy Father’s name Adonai, it is finished Golgotha weeps i use words to describe love i’ve only dreamed of but have never tasted do not know how to give i whisper bedtime stories to lovers about past life love affairs and caresses that…

Love Poems: if this is goodbye

he says: ‘if this is goodbye let me leave you with this’ and goes on to speak in metaphors and riddles about games and how he is merely a player he’s just here so he doesn’t get fined i sit in silence and listen as he explains that even in love he does not play to win he thinks i play to win because i love him as if that is not the point of it all as if i do not see myself in him as if i was not born to a motherless father so i know what…