Poems & Essays

30 Dec

I Write Your Name

General/Column One Response

My beautiful girl, my ragged girl–
your tattered sweater shot through 
with holes hangs off your body, limp

wave of defeat, of surrender
in the autumn rain–
I write your name.

My bundle of bones, my armful of twigs–
your filthy hair a dark knot
atop your head, your moon-pale

face cratered with sores your meth-crazed
hands make you pick pick pick–
I write your name.

I write your name
on the days you haven’t eaten
the days you haven’t slept

on your body barely there, curled
in the womb of the quilt, waiting.
I write your name.

Leah Johnson is a Washington, DC poet. A member of the Surrey Street Poets, her work has been published in Green Mountains Review Online, The Healing Muse, Oberon Poetry Magazine, The Ekphrastic Review, and Mothers Always Write. She is a 2017 Best of the Net nominee for her poem “The Goldfinch” in Beltway Poetry Quarterly. She is a co-host of the WordWorks Café Muse Literary Salon. In previous incarnations, she has been a member of the Writing Studies faculty at American University, a piano teacher, and co-founder of Dumbarton Concerts in Georgetown.

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1 Comment

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  1. Ariele Taylor

    April 26, 2020 at 2:27 pm

    Wow. Thank you for sharing this.


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