You are the bloodPoolingWhere I fellYou are the woundBlossomingYou are red lipsSmudged in a circle- Japan.

You were a snowy morningThe likes we woke up to as kidsYou were a clean paper sheetBlinking cursor and a click. ….

(Now I know you are a strawberrySmashed on the spotless floor.)Now I know we are the strawberriesSmashed on your spotless floor. .

You are the red button of panicAnd someone cut the wiring,You are the red zone of dangerOn the maps of dreamsYou are the red targetFull of broken darts tips.

And now I know our heartsAre garbage you don’t know how to sort.


The city flickers

through the windows,

the train is panting

with people and silence

I try to worki try to livei try to lovei try to tastei try to be one with youi try not to taketoo much spacei try to fold myselfin an origami cranei try not to be angry whenyou reject me

—empty seat—

Hey, foreigner!“you can’t use thisgym, you’ll scare theelderly”“We don’trent to foreigners”“Sorry, it doesn’tmatter that you canspeak Japanese,foreigners are notallowed to live here”“We don’t sell travelinsurance toforeigners”

“we don’t cut blonde hair”“we don’t know how todye foreign hair”“we are a Frenchbakery, but we hireonly Japanese people”“Your name is toolong.”“Your Japanese is toogood, there’s no wayyou wrote this email”

as words bruise our badly hidden heartsas rejections break the strength in our bones that empty seat is the last crackbetween us and youthe last crack that sends us crumblingand no amount of kintsugi* can repair us.

Someone today smiled at me.For a second, I wasa partof this.Whole.Home.The cracks in my heart – gold-filled.*kintsugi: a traditional Japanese art of mending broken ceramics with liquid gold as a bonding agent.

The original appearance of the poem is in multiple columns.
The original appearance of the poem is in multiple columns.

—–dictionary blues——

When you say ‘slovenly’do you mean ‘lovingly’?After all, there is LOVE in the center of it,dancing,            jumping                        celebratinglovingly and slovenly as Slavs inviting you to their homesto feast?When you say ‘slovenly’ so passionately,do you mean ‘stormingly’?Slavs have been known to drink thundersand speak lightings,            crash into lighthousesand washed away on strange shoresthey’ve also been known to pull peopleinto friendships.When you say ‘slovenly’ so hastily,do you maybe mean ‘sloW-ingly’?As time slows downfor usas we discuss,give our timeto everyone,wander behind the clocks.

When you, so ‘slovingly’ say ‘sLOVEnly’,do you mean ‘heavenly’?To honour the Slavs in space, among the stars,from where borders are blurred?From where we cannot tellthe real meaning of your words.

Top photo by Fabrizio Verrecchia on Pexels

“What if we took all this anger born of righteous love and aimed it?”

—Ijeoma Olou, “We women can be anything. But can we be angry?” Medium.com

ANGER showcases essays and poetry featuring well-aimed anger from femme writers, writers of color, LGBTQIA+ writers, First Nations writers, and disabled writers.