"Hourglass" is featured in The Southeast Review Vol. 36.2.
A father exists, but not
much is enough?
& that’s a sufficient riddle.
There is a limit. Even when the action
is your name— to father
is a verb. Predictable
that I ask about love. Lovelace
my Grandfather’s last
name, the first
of many branches on burned
bark. I stand at the Black Warrior
Dam & am alert at the lack
of alarm. I could dip my toe in the town’s
drinking water. I walk
more than I drive, but once
when I was high I curved into the right turn
of a casual street & thought
the police car’s siren alit
a dead black boy laying over two solid
parallel yellow lines, & maybe it was a trip
trapped in the blue note of a trombone.
I hope so, or
I’m sliding every egg from my uterus. Give me
baron when the dead boys from the screen appear dead
Last week a wind
wandered into my car on the same street. It was
lost and non-threatening. I drove
it home, though we nearly passed
& Grandpa’s empty
chair cracks my mother in half. I rub
her face, he holds
returning to sand.
Nabila Lovelace is a first-generation Queens native, her people hail from Trinidad & Nigeria. She is the author of Sons of Achilles (YesYes Books, 2018), her debut book of poetry. You can currently find her kicking it in Tuscaloosa.
Photo: A. H. Jerriod Avant