Ashes to Ashes

Porsha Monique Allen


I wonder if every little black child
drags a shadow the shape of a tombstone
whenever their heads rest on cotton pillows
do nameless blisters trace their fingertips
slavery makes its own trail down our skin,
have us wishing we could jump out of it sometimes
don’t even know why and sometimes that’s easier
on the bones                              forgive us Lord,
if we mistake heaven for another
cotton field perhaps a bit more bearable this time
at least we got the chance to bury our people
haven’t we earned the right




Porsha Monique Allen received her MFA from Queens University of Charlotte. Her work has appeared and is forthcoming in The Scene & Heard Journal, Scalawag Magazine, Apricity Press, LEON Literary Review, Rattle, Obsidian, and Belle Ombre. She was selected as a semi-finalist for Naugatuck River Review’s 12th Annual Narrative Poetry Contest.

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