henry 7. reneau, jr.
Dispatches from the Land of Erasure #2
Repeated verbatim into the symmetry of sorrow, like an eye unmoored from its socket, or keloid mesh of scars, reaching out in assumed relief, or cumulative agony, the way trauma tethers itself to our ancestry. Something’s always breathing down our neck, transmitting, through lineage, like an inheritance of toxic despair, the chemical dirge of flesh once fettered by iron.
* * * * * *
Pain has a reflective surface of want, brooding need, as it penetrates the flesh, vibrant as a spring that retracts when touched, or an unending longing, a reverence. The pages of a bible, that hold between them the last chlorophyll heartbeats of a soon-to-be-reaved dead flower, a sort of prolonged suffering, akin to momentary joy, or the scent of determination given off by the corpses of martyrs.
* * * * * *
We quibble trivial issues as if they had a life of their own, even as gunshot splayed children become the new meta-phor Black mothers, left to moan immovable denial or cry into condolence, an ocean too vast to swallow. Where hurricane wails & levees fail, & people quickly remember the gospel of Jesus, as life jacket, or condone earthly violence, whole cities submerged in flood, but pain bobs to the surface again & again: the body language, vocal inflections & facial recognition, like treetops jutting from deluge.
* * * * * *
A repetition of change is gonna come, like Hope, digging a hole to China with a spoon, is a circular rhetoric of diminishing returns, proven unreliable by an enemy who uses music as a weapon, waterboarding, solitary confinement & humiliation. The inescapable blackness as in-just-us rains down onto its most vulnerable spectators, or the token-ized Other, the type that feels a little safer to Amerikkkans, because, more often than not, it has a narrative of educational ambition, or can live with chasing success like a quota. How strenuously they run from the past, & never expect it to catch up with them.
* * * * * *
The rock-jawed face of intolerance, as ignorant as those who believe so zealous, they queued the soup-lined regiment of voters, transfixed by Hype, but waiting for the other shoe to drop, onto those who do not believe, who cannot be swayed by representation in absentia, or the presidential Twitter-verse of democracy, are heathen heretics, blasphemers, or terrorists. Should be wiped from the face of the earth, with bibles & bullets & Big-Head bucks. The begging braids of starving refugees hobbled in borderline detention camps, & the needle of hate spinning to all points of the compass.

henry 7. reneau, jr. writes words of conflagration to awaken the world ablaze, an inferno of free verse illuminated by his affinity for disobedience, like a chambered bullet that commits a felony every day, an immolation that blazes from his heart, phoenix-fluxed red & gold, exploding through change is gonna come to implement the fire next time. He is the author of the poetry collection, freedomland blues (Transcendent Zero Press) and the e-chapbook, physiography of the fittest (Kind of a Hurricane Press), now available from their respective publishers. Additionally, he has self-published a chapbook entitled 13hirteen Levels of Resistance, and his collection, The Book Of Blue(s) : Tryin’ To Make A Dollar Outta’ Fifteen Cents, was a finalist for the 2018 Digging Press Chapbook Series. His work has also been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

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