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Terence Winch

Quincy Scott Jones: Pick of the Week [ed. Terence Winch]

Quincy Scott Jones (photo by Dominique Sindayiganza)  web





















She Said in Bed


When I die let my body fly.

Book me a trip on a rocket ship

and launch me at dawn.  Play some

Hendrix and a Nina Simone song.  Give me

a eulogy through a static headset.  Let the

booster jets be my pallbearers and give

me a smoke plume in lieu of a tomb.  And

everyone awake who tries to fake

some caffeinated joy can take their eyes

out of their latte chai and turn their face

to space instead.


What would you like for breakfast? I said.


She said in bed Let me sail on solar winds over

all of the lunar seas

past crises and clouds and tranquility

nectar and moisture and fertility

even past the pyramids NASA never lets us see

until my body passes right over the moon.

Let me float like a balloon until I’m over Venus—

the namesake of flytraps

the reason for jimmy hats

both deity and devil and a woman

at that.  Let my ship land on a mountain cap

and let my body burn in a snowfall of lead. she said.


What do you want for breakfast? I said.


Let me bathe in 700 degrees

under storms of pure CO2.

Let me walk without shoes

on volcanic plains and wash my hair

in sulfuric rains just don’t leave me

down here.  On Earth I watch

fathers get shot sitting in patrol cars

while cops shoot sons with empty hands.


                                                Bury me

on a land where I can never stand

in air I can never breathe

on a planet I can never know

around a star I cannot see.

Let me leave this world when I am dead.


And chocolate chip pancakes please she said.


Quincy Scott Jones is an associate professor at Barnard College, the poetry advisor for Columbia University Undergraduate Creative Writing, and the author of The T-Bone Series and  How to Kill Yourself Instead of Your Children.  His work has appeared in the African American Review, The North American Review, the Bellingham Review, Love Jawns: A Mixtape, and The Feminist Wire.  With Nina Sharma he co-curates Blackshop, a column highlighting BIPOC artists.  His graphic narrative, BlackNerd, is in the works. [Author photo by Dominique Sindayiganza]


Harmonia Rosales  Birth of Oshun  detail  2017  oil on canvas.                                                                          

   Harmonia Rosales, Birth of Oshun, detail, 2017, oil on canvas. Rosales uses Greek and Roman mythologies to draw viewers in, as in this work— modeled on Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus”—which depicts the Yòrúba goddess Oshun.

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That Ship Has Sailed
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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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