“depth” by Jahmel Ian Fields

Image result for School Bus on the road

That summer day, my face was as bright as the sun
No butterflies in my stomach, no being displayed
A joyous occasion, as if it were Christmas
We rode the big steel yellow monster for a time
I begin to smell the air as it races past
The promised land, was in my boney little hands
I erupted out of my shackles and moved on
locked on the greatest wonder the land had produced
transparent to my glare, but lively to my touch
as if I were an old man’s hairline, I recede
my heart has the rhythm of a drum, who can hear
a symbol of hope, clasp my arm, I breath again


さむい ですね。

“Til It’s Gone” by Bresha Jones

Image result for Black Teen girl sillouette

Stay out til midnight

Just didn’t care

Take away my phone

I’ll just go somewhere than here

So, what if I decide to waste away my life

You told me I was the worst daughter that anyone could ever like.

But I know that you never cared.

You call me names cause your hurting from deep amounts of pain

You put me down because you can’t stand up to your own weight.

Do what you want

Im done

I try and try

But it wasn’t never enough

You’re the parent here and now I’m the long lost one.

“puff puff pass” by Ziggy Farrow Walker

puff puff pass 

all the others niggas

shuffle past

on their way to join the 

upper class

but fuck; fuck that

we don need that crap

let them race on back

we’ll sit here and ghetto relay with a

puff puff pass

there’s not a cloud in the sky 

the weather alright 

mighty fine

so im 

not sure why 

i feel like 

comin over 

for shelter

but still

would you let me in

if i did

would you let me sleep over

though we no longer kids

would you hug me

even tho its bigger than this shit

please would you hold me snugly

even if my hands be shakin

cant roll up those buds for buddies

no trees to bake in

no ease for takin

would you still call me kin

would you still me take in

to together be creatin 

a puff puff pass 

puff puff pass

puff puff pass

move to the music

to articulate the pain i hum

you shake your ass

we know what we sayin

we know what we wrote

with or without that grass

theres a mass in our throat- 

share the burden with our 

puff puff pass

you know what they say

its another friday

shit another high day

shit when is it your or my day

we come together 


on yet another friday

so yay

its another friday


its another friday

hey say 

whats with the tongue in cheek

tell me

what jokes helped you walk through the wreckage this week

what folks or whose memories made this time the path less bleak

please we weak

i’ll make us laugh till we weak

sharing jokes that helped us this week

you know in retelling 

we can make each other shriek 

it pretending forgetting 

of the journeying searching seekin’

that again we still aint quite there before the weekend

come on for i really tweak

with them jokes that helped you walk through this week

that helped you puff puff pass

puff puff pass

puff puff pass

we mime cheers

guess its halfway glass 

we laugh quicker

but the healing not that fast

process through that inner impasse

turn to a puff puff pass

makin art and care together

to pull in to pick up from there

never set it there

detangle our histories and our hair

get through whatever



its sunshine or stormy weather

art and care together to get together

your hearing not so good

you hum you wonder

what that note wants to sing

i’m nearsighted; let

my glasses fall

paint my portrait; wonder what 

they think about it all 

have the younger ones now

we get them through the worst

its love beyond words

and well 

all i can say is i hope i die first

go out easy not rough not tough

we been through that stuff

no more raggedy huff 

jus breezy catch our breath

no more weezy 

go out easy almost cheesy

please jus a puff puff… pass

“Cinderella’s Step-Mama”

In my short marriage, I struggled I labored
To be fair and right, like a maiden fabled
But one day he passed, left me his young lass
And I hate her more than improperly set tables.

I feel ashamed of course, for my hateful heart
But I lust to hurt her, I act so very dark
I fear my cold self, I never wished to be evil
But love quickly turns sour, like milk, I’m unstable

I grow angry when I witness her mysterious strength
Drawn from a source, I too yearn to embrace
I dream to be like her, tough to the core,
Failing, I can’t stand her good temper anymore

When she found love, I grew colder still
I know I hurt her, but I’m not me by will
Life isn’t sunshine, fairies, and white doves,
I do my best, I just lost my true love.

“Factors” by Saher Hajidamji

Image result for Mathematical factors of 8

I remember

Playing on the swings till dark

Falsely promised to be careful when I left

Force my fingernails to pry the quarter from his fist

Wrestling her tired hands with a “thank you”

Still I lack to equate the growing receipt they never let me see

I am a product of love and care 

Added to every other relevant synonym 

But the math didn’t predict the love 

That turns into tenderness leaving you vulnerable

Liquid care solidifying to responsibility only to force pressure

Eight lines about love but you chose to focus on the last two

Consider this poem sad and hurt my feelings

But if you could pass your math class by pretending to understand

Then maybe you should just focus on the first stanza

It’s prettier anyways

“Smoke” by Rachel Aurino

Image result for cigarette burning

Foreign smoke slithers down my throat

Filling my lungs with regret, inhale

Tainting my thoughts with shit, exhale.

Beating too fast, too hard, too hot

With each pound in my heart there’s a tear in my thoughts.

Focus on your breathing, please no cheating,

Foreign thoughts don’t stop competing.



Reality fades away

Waking up the hairs that crawl down my spine,

Setting a trap in my own mind,

Waiting to get caught.

Breath through the pain

Just keep counting, I need to stay sane

Whoever thought of box breathing has never met my brain.

1, 2, 3, 4…


Inhale, just once more.

Catching my breath, now harder than before.

But baby who’s really to blame, you signed up for this war.

“The Butterfly” by Nicholas Ethan Alonso

Image result for butterfly clip art black and white free

Hot tea….

All things that kept me amused, slowly seemed to fade away with the pluck of a guitar

I just look out of my window.
See the blinds to my right sway with nature’s undying breath.

Taunting me…
That undying breath calling me.
Appealing to my weakened self.
I move my hand to caress the barrier.
I catch a glimpse of myself through the window.
My face resets

I sink slowly back to my chair.
I see the blue butterflies pass left to right.
I keep staring with bloody eyes.
They’re all too pretty.
It burns but I can’t look away.
Then my neighbor comes out to throw trash outside and they disappear.

All gone so fast that it didn’t register.
Ah forget it.

I smoke another cigarette and wait.

“VIVA LA RAZA” by Naomi Iglesias

Image result for L.A. La Placita

Ran away and we can now be free
Free of bullets, deaths, and stealings,
Free of all the pain and suffering
Finally able to live the dream but
We’re surrounded by thousands of screams

Who’s going to tell them we were here first
Who’s going to tell them our roles were reversed
Children taken from their homes kicking and screaming
Forced to say goodbye wishing they were dreaming
In cages cold as they lie on the cement floor
Their faces stained with streaks of tears

Women raped and beaten
Their hope is weakened
Day by day going insane
Treated in ways that are inhumane
Guards stand still with no expression
I wonder aren’t they tired of oppression

We try to fight but always fall short
My people getting killed while on their hustle
All this anger for lack of a green card
We work hard but some die trying
Our names line the streets of L.A
We want to be equals but we might never see that day