Death of Cold

there are little girls waiting on winter & daddies & cookies post funeral & no one wants the weight of it all (on their shoulders) no one wants a neck cracking or scoliosis from the wading in the pool no one wants to be hunched over or humpty dumpty but all the walls are there & the little girls left standing choose to stand like soldiers or sunflowers or standing stagnant water what a baptismal land this has become & who can trump any idiot with power who can donald their way out of lie just as sure as the sky is a pack of cards (all jokers) not a diamond left


there are people using 8 dollar words to talk about race &
race relations & you think that's great

all that you can hold in your mouth today is this:


& you know it isn’t frosting on a gluten free cupcake or
phd-esque but it all you can muster with the vulnerability
of your whole self spread around like hummus on whole food cracker


the women are wearing pricey clothing & expensive jewelry & they are
slaying it with the power in their education & the white people are
nodding their heads like yes you are speaking in the perfect language
so that I can be your ally but all you can push out of your barren lips is


& this will not put you in the best publications or land you a book on the
bestsellers list or get you circulated as an educated black woman on
the scene but—your lineage is a worker bee’s haven for desiccated wombs
& deaf ventricles (swarm) & all you can revolution up is


Laverne & Essie

when essie & laverne red-light-crossed the street their smells stayed on the corner of 10th street & the trash doesn't go out until tomorrow & no one wants to be associated with riffraff or tarts or girls who go bump in the night & we acted like we didn't know those girls like we don't do any of the things they do & this is how one of them lost herself because we never found time to say hello or smoke a drag with her all of us other girls thinking we are better than a common girl who only reads the comics on sunday mornings the kind of girl who never attends writers circles only open mic's & free beer tuesdays we don't want to be those kind of women the ones who don't talk super deep about racism or pluto the ones who laugh at politicians & straight gay parade-ers & there is something classy about the way essie asks for a second beer something so oh-la-la about the way she pops the cap. & you think to yourself behind your new moleskin & french dictionary that you are not exciting when you pop your cap that your drink does not make any noise or feel burn-y at the back of your throat that you are just a regular writing girl & essie & laverne are true flash fiction.

Anastacia Reneé

Anastacia Reneé is a queer super-shero of color moonlighting as a writer, performance artist and creative writing workshop facilitator and Writer-in-Residence at Hugo House. She has received awards and fellowships from Cave Canem, Hedgebrook, VONA, Jack Straw, Ragdale and Artist Trust. Her Chapbook 26, (Dancing Girl Press), is an abbreviated alphabet expression of the lower and uppercase lives of women and girls. Her poetry, & fiction have been published in Painted Bride Quarterly, Literary Orphans, Bitterzoet, Radius Poetry, Seattle Review, Duende, Bone Bouquet, and many more. Recently Anastacia Reneé has been expanding her creative repertoire into the field of theater and her one woman show, 9 Ounces is a social justice play braiding together three generations. Lately she’s been obsessed with the body's memory and infatuated by myths, fables & imaginary truths.

Photograph by Christie MacLean


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