ENSEMBLE FOR SOMNAMBULISTS by SHAMAR HARRIOTT

I am exquisite in the darkness—
Never Blanche DuBois.
Never so derelict, but maybe the same
sickness; the same hunger for those
tarantula arms. I am drowsing in
phosphorescence    lulled from these
sinuous shores by those questions
of divinity: The wound in the right side
and the mirroring of fevered light.

Flash cut: Streetcar reconsidered
as an existential mediation on the condition
of the Modern American Negro,
driven to madness by the ghosts of
plantations we’ve never farmed, not with
our real hands    though our sprits still live
in fear of the overseer’s horse and the
land which yields nothing but frost—
Consider slavery as a strictly sexual
enterprise. Consider too this poem
as the last great masterpiece of us.

You have left me here    half-mad and swimming
in taffeta skirts and colored lights.
You have left me here  craving barbaric sex.
I have been five years
without you and I am hungry
for a victim.


Shamar is currently a student at Broward College in South Florida, where his work has appeared multiple times in P’an Ku.He is also a two-time winner of the Robert Meeker Memorial Writing Contest.

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