from "summer, somewhere" by Danez Smith

April 16, 2018
if we dream the old world
we wake up hands up.
 
sometimes we unfuneral a boy
who shot another boy to here
 
& who was once a reaper we make
a brother, a crush, a husband, a duet
 
of sweet remission. say the word
i can make any black boy a savior
 
make him a flock of ravens
his body burst into ebon seraphs.
 
this, our handcrafted religion.
we are small gods of redemption.
 
we dance until guilt turns to sweat.
we sweat until we flood & drown.
 
don’t fret, we don’t die. they can’t kill
the boy on your shirt again.
 
 
//
 
 
 
 
 
 
the forest is a flock of boys
who never got to grow up
 
blooming into forever
afros like maple crowns
 
reaching sap-slow toward sky. watch
Forest run in the rain, branches
 
melting into paper-soft curls, duck
under the mountain for shelter. watch
 
the mountain reveal itself a boy.
watch Mountain & Forest playing
 
in the rain, watch the rain melt everything
into a boy with brown eyes & wet naps—
 
the lake turns into a boy in the rain
the swamp—a boy in the rain
 
the fields of lavender—brothers
dancing between the storm.
 
 
//