Ann Arbor Review


Chris Lord
Joseph McNair
Duane Locke
Lazlo Slomovits
Alan Britt
Shutta Crum
Tolu Ogunlesi
Jerry Blanton
Paul B. Roth
Fred Wolven
Felino Soriano
Sharon E. Boyd
Joanie Freeman
Jumoke Verissimo
Running Cub
Jeanpaul Ferro
S. P. Flannery
Kristina Marie Darling
Gary Beck
Dike Okoro
Karyn M. Wolven


two months ago, the boss
woke, to put to sleep the office coffee.
now he complains of "underperforming"

and of "flagged indices"--the kind of words
that loiter around the brows
of underachieving managers,

words that drop dangerously
upon heads that now lack
the caffeine of clear thinking.

and the milk of contentment.
these days official memos taste sugarless,
just like the white-collared dreams that collide

in the air above the cubicles till noon;
dreams of rats that rub out the finish line
with their feet.

rats that will never grow used to the damming
of the black, steaming river
that never liked to be called volcano.


White shirts&shorts assemble in the shrine
Of time, furtively invoking the godofgrandprix.

White drops of clarity seed
In the blueblack muddiness of dawn's bowl.

We are goosebumps, swaying
On Issele-Uku's dew-darkened dust.

We are toy soldiers sprawled
In the counsel of ease.

We are ferris wheels of feet, powered
By instincts still intact in the slime

Of birth.  And we are voices unravelling
From mouths kissed by blindness.

Tolu Ogunlesi, Lagos, Nigeria

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