July/Aug 2016 • Vol. XXXVIII No. 4 PoetryJuly 1, 2016 |

One Hundred Amazing Facts about the Negro, with Complete Proof, II

They could deal with the Negro as a symbol or a victim but had no sense of him as a man. —James Baldwin Nature, we have spent our many lives undressing our scowl colossal, half-light stripped from eye and sockets, that song bojangling, unrecognizable. Home some brute sojourn we wracked unspeakable, we mute vernacular smashed nuclear sun and this code-switch. All night the world bled on my fang like a language and we unsmiling            our narrow gape            our space unslanging, And all of us a zero. Count old catalogues of bone, hair, teeth: How broad how thick how beastly and you the glass beaker of seeds who gauge minute fractions of man, am I Orang-utan Or am I savage? Neighbour, I am naming you damned. Blood brother, trained guerilla, renegade. Killer. Threat of the Africanized bee. Are we unsymmetry, skulls a million unfillable, this dark uranium. With life half-cycling. The parched chopper

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Safiya Sinclair was born and raised in Montego Bay, Jamaica. She is the author of Cannibal (University of Nebraska Press, 2016), winner of a 2016 Whiting Writers’ Award, and the 2015 Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry. Her other honours include the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and the Amy Clampitt Residency Award. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry, The Nation, Boston Review, Gulf Coast, The Gettysburg Review, New England Review, and elsewhere. Sinclair received her MFA in Poetry from the University of Virginia and is currently a currently a PhD candidate in literature and creative writing at the University of Southern California.

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