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Poetry 'you're Dead America' By Danez Smith Is The Best Poem On The Internet Right Now

Nigeria Student Forum / Books/Literature/Writing / Poetry 'you're Dead America' By Danez Smith Is The Best Poem On The Internet Right Now

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Mathew Oluwaseun
University of Ilorin (Unilorin)
Mechanical Engineering
500Level, Nigeria.
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i fed your body to the fish

traded it at lunch for milk

i know where they buried you

cause it’s my mouth

they tell me bootstraps

& i spit up a little leather

they tell me Christ

but you don’t have black friends

during the anthem

i hum Niggas in Paris

i cha cha slide over the flag

C-walk on occasion

i put a spell on you

it called for 3/5s of my blood

apple pie, red

bones & a full moon

but instead i did it

in the daylight, wanting you

to see me ending you

stupid stupid me

i know better than to fuck

with a recipe

i don’t make chicken

when I don’t have eggs

look at what i did: on the TV

the man from TV

is gonna be president

he has no words

& hair beyond simile

you’re dead, America

& where you died

grew something worse –

crop white as the smile

of a man with his country on his side

a gun on his other side


tomorrow, i’ll have hope.

tomorrow i can shift the wreckage

& find a seed.

i don’t know what will grow

i’ve lost my faith in this garden

the bees are dying

the water poisons whole cities

but my honeyed kin

those brown folks who make

up the nation of my heart

only allegiance i stand for

realer than any god

for them i bury whatever

this country thought it was.

Danez Smith is the author of [insert] boy (YesYes Books, 2014), winner of the Kate Tufts Discovery Award and the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry, and Don’t Call Us Dead (Graywolf Press, 2017). This poem was first published on Buzzfeed Books.


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Don not get stuck at the well of argument. Let God be your vindicator. Let Him fight your battles. He will vindicate you better than you can vindicate yourself.

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