This poem is wearing a hoodie.
Miss Liberty walks home from the store.
George Wallace watches the neighborhood for us.
Just don’t go making this a black thing, okay?
Occupy a state of sunshine.
Stand your prime rib ground with a dead teenager on your lawn.
Pass a law to make it easier to shoot this poem.
Pass a law to invade Iran, and American vaginas.
Just don’t remind us of our dead daughters’ bodies
decaying in minds and parks and lakes.
Let poor kids work, building ships for the uninsured corpses
of their mothers and dads.
This poem lets you fashion bullets from their unchained bones.
You hear this poem on the Middle Passage, sitting in a pew,
pretending to sing.
You see Dr. King weeping on the river Jordan’s far shore.
Praise the welfare whore.
Praise poverty, for it is the power and the glory
of Heavenly fortune, forever.
Pray for the dead, for they will just keep coming—
immigrants, too soon, crossing over.
Michael Dwayne Smith proudly owns and operates one of the English-speaking world’s most unusual names. His apparitions can be seen at Word Riot, >kill author, The Cortland Review, Monkeybicycle, Blue Fifth Review, BLIP, The Northville Review, Pirene’s Fountain, Orion headless, Quantum Poetry Magazine, Short, Fast, and Deadly, Phantom Kangaroo, Red River Review, Right Hand Pointing, and other haunts. A recipient of both the Hinderaker Prize for poetry and the Polonsky Prize for fiction, he currently lives in a desert town along with his wife, son, and rescued animals—all of whom talk in their sleep. Conjure him on Twitter with the spell @michaelthebear or on the interwebs at http://michaeldwaynesmith.tumblr.com