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Poetry

On Violence

Stephanie Edwards

You, a lost boy of Sudan, had to cross a desert to escape
violence — slaughter.  You came here. Ever kill a man? I once asked—
silence.  I think I lost God in the deep white knife scars on your dark arms.

You came here, to be called — write it! — Nigger.
When a football player cursed you with that name,
I watched the hulk of a white man fly across the gymnasium,

blood dripping from his nose, forming a Rorschach test
over his white shirt. I saw a buck attacking a coyote for killing his doe.
No, there was no evil in your eyes.  You did not come here for this.

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