about the author

dezireé a. brown is a black queer woman poet, scholar, and self-proclaimed “social justice warrior,” born and raised in Flint, MI. They are currently an MFA candidate at Northern Michigan University, and often claim to have been born with a poem written across their chest. A Poetry and Non-Fiction Editor for Heavy Feather Review, their work has appeared or is forthcoming in Cartridge Lit, Puerto del Sol, The Boiler Journal, Public Pool, and the anthology Best “New” African Poets 2015, among others. They tweet at @deziree_a_brown.


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One Poem 

dezireé a. brown



an unfinished summation of anxiety.

yes I | spilled myself into bombs
filled with celandine and sour ocean,

waiting for its waves to wipe
me away. my body has booby trapped

itself without warning; I am only
wearing the same face I was yesterday.

can you hear  this       skin
tick       tick     tick | against this swell

of blue and brown and green and white?
botchlings comb my ribs for mountains

between deaths | while she peers
into my eyes, wedged open

between holes in the floor of the stream.
do it, Aria. reach through your star map

to pull a sun from the moon’s hungry
mouth | pour its molten song onto the wick

let Selene sweep my prayer through the ashes—





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