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About this poet

Morgan Parker is the author of There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé (Tin House Books, 2017) and Other People’s Comfort Keeps Me Up at Night (Switchback Books, 2015). Her third collection, Magical Negro, is forthcoming from Tin House Books in 2019. She is the recipient of a 2017 literature fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a Cave Canem graduate fellow. She co-curates the Poets With Attitude reading series with Tommy Pico, and is one half of the duo, The Other Black Girl Collective, with Angel Nafis. She lives in Los Angeles.

Lush Life

The most beautiful hearse                    I have ever seen
is parked in front of my stoop
Perched            hands folded for six to eight weeks
twinkling like a siren                               a new idea of love

Trees are planted but don’t exist yet
They are leaning non existent               into us
A trough of hearts meets me in the anxious sun
I could rot here

Something like          the holy spirit
pours you over bruised ice
There isn’t anything             more to say than holy
Beautiful men never looking upon me

I take music self-stirred       and sleep
alone           curve into the morning like an almond
My shoulders                          lush as romantics
You wash up on a barstool
smooth heartache                  black sand

From There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé (Tin House, 2017). Copyright © 2017 by Morgan Parker. Used with the permission of International Creative Management. 

From There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé (Tin House, 2017). Copyright © 2017 by Morgan Parker. Used with the permission of International Creative Management. 

Morgan Parker

Morgan Parker

Morgan Parker is the author of There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé (Tin House Books, 2017).

by this poet

poem
They descend from the boat two by two. The gap in Angela Davis’s teeth speaks to the gap in James Baldwin’s teeth. The gap in James Baldwin’s teeth speaks to the gap in Malcolm X’s Teeth. The gap in Malcolm X’s teeth speaks to the gap in Malcolm X’s teeth. The gap in Condoleezza Rice’s teeth doesn’t speak. Martin
2
poem

Once I was:
lone brown spot
in a garden

of upright stems
They said
what do you have to say

let your dry lips open
let cocoa powder
rain onto our desks

they stared at me
for six days
as if I were a peach pit

as if by lunchtime
I