Ann Arbor Review


Alan Britt
Shutta Crum
Jumoke Verissimo
Las Slomovits
Richard Kurtz
Lyn Lifshin
Duane Locke
Serena Wilcox
Jerry Blanton
Dami Ajayi
Odimegwu Onwumere
Joanie Freeman
Dike Okoro
Amit Parmessur
Paul B. Roth
Divya Rajan
Kim Keith
Fred Wolven
C. Derick Vann
Al Ortolani
Steve Barfield
Jim Davis
Chris Lord
Jennifer Burd
Will Swanson
Isabel Kestner

Lisa Schmidt
Running Cub
Tolu Ogunlesi



Why didn't I get swallowed in the wind that blew our way,
standing aloof uninspired by people's sympathies?
In sun's heat, under the tree--exchanging smiles for pity sighs;
You in the shade, I in the sun, learning the language of departure

as it escapes the anus of selfless labourers.  There's absence in watching
dust hit dust as shovels scrape ground, around peeking memorials,
watching silence sing choruses we daren't; re-theming the past;
as we, in the median time, visit our desires and let our eulogy tarry.

I am counting pores as dust breaks into grief and
                              sweaty fingers massacre firmness,
                              hands clutch--lift soil--scatter; earth upon earth.

The suppurating sore of roofless spirits migrate into bones,
                              Ache deepens its impressions on my mind,
                                                           until it yawls:

As I am dreaming that I am thinking that death is rest.
My hairs don't stand or shudder when our eyes meet;
they lean against my skin afraid of being carried by the wind

blowing past, fanning mourners turning away from the grave,
like figurines, moved to fill a space awhile, they depart.
But I still hear your voice as you raised shovel and tossed dust?
"Ma, the day after today is tomorrow, will Papa come back?"


Jumoke Verissimo, Lagos, Nigeria

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