Nabila Lovelace

Standard No. 2

grandfather shucked the leadhead
of no. 2’s to sharpen the point
when i handed him my broken pencil.
in the after his steady grip seared
my brain, his choice blade, his straight
arm a lowercase l pushing snow off
a windshield I a parallel force
his arm chipping away tree husk to cuspate.
my eyes took footage so I could take up
a blade like so
& do away with the second grade wall
mounted sharpener’s machine whirr
us pupils opted out of bathroom
breaks to lineup in front
& return to our desk with a needle’s
envy. another day, w/ the sun dotting
my eyes, another second grader stabbed
me w/ a freshly sharpened mead
or was it me that wielded my shading tool
or did i see my sis take one to the arm
& alarm in shrieks of lead
poisoning? overheard in adult
air & stories that came after 10PM
do you know where your children are
mine were a frontline of stuffed
animals & below my sleep.
a prime blade for carving.

Message from Klismos in the Multiplex on the Avenue

Recline, bitch. I bring news
gooder than Sunday’s new loafers.
              Today your braids cascade
              & give the buses something to pump
                           the breaks. Merciful scalp. Savage
                           edges. Trumpets take up full
                                         course meals for you. Oxen outdated
                                          in their ending participle. Oxtails
                                                        by the boiling pot. Luxury evolves
                                                        basic, from chairs to couches, but seams

                                                         poking & proding for the inner rot,
                                                         part of the frame
                                                         liable to termite engorgement,
                                                         what was made from hack
                                                         goes back to hack. The kindness
                                                         of trees is ticking,
                                                         Their sweet is for them.

Nabila Lovelace                            

Nabila Lovelace is a first-generation Queens born poet, her people hail from Trinidad & Nigeria. Sons of Achilles, her debut book of poems, is out now through YesYes Books. You can currently find her kicking it in Tuscaloosa.