poem index


Aaron Coleman

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Aaron Coleman. Photo credit: Katherine Simóne Reynolds

Aaron Coleman is the author of St. Trigger (Button Poetry, 2016), winner of the 2015 Button Poetry Prize, and Threat Come Close, forthcoming from Four Way Books in 2018. The recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship and a Cave Canem Fellowship, Coleman is currently a Chancellor’s Graduate Fellow in Washington University St. Louis’ Comparative Literature PhD program.

by this poet

A crocodile slips its earth-toned body 
back into the river, in silence, violence down
and for its nightness

I cannot see the water. With fear 
I am alone. Slick rocks smile thin anonymous light, they lie

about what I am. I see and try to hold
my body in my body, trace a vein 
from the base of my palm through

You remind me of the Underground Railroad. I’ve learned to watch
for the kerosene lamp aglare in your distance. Past the fuel and wick
at the far end of your forest, there’s a mud basement, a