From Emily Taylor: The Crown Ain't Worth Much (by Hanif WIllis-Abdurraqib) is a masterpiece and there are so many things to do with it & anything I write doesn't seem to do it justice tbh. this is after his poem after Fall Out Boy.
on finding your old converse from 2009
covered in rusty watercolor
from the wet sand of the baseball diamond
where you’d run in circles to ward off
the undiagnosed hyperactivity,
and under that, scrawled lists of bands
and favorite lyrics in thin Sharpie;
partially to prove that you were
a cool girl, even though you are neither
a girl, nor cool, at ALL, but also because
you didn’t think your own words
were good enough to clothe you yet.
These cocktails of punk quotes
your first found poem, your first toolbox
for expression, those were the years
of painting someone else’s words
all over your town, to write
on your wrist so the permanent marker
tingle replaced an old sting, you
were honestly a parody of yourself.
Since then, you’ve found words of your own
to protect yourself, but on those days
where your words aren’t enough,
you pop in your old headphones, lace up
your shoes, and remember the songs
you pulled apart with your two hands,
coaxing this new voice into your throat.
An ongoing conversation between writers and the text that they're reading.