J’Sun Howard

Effigies In Skylight
“falling into the sky” – Kelela
there are no poems
about black figures
falling from the sky;
or one’s where they
bring clouds with
them to eat for light;
& how they don’t
have eyes, ears. or noses-
only mouths to gospel
about how they’ve come
to take their kin; & as
they walk on earth,
they tear away at what
we think earth to be;
& the tear catches fire,
blazing sigils, a portal,
to some world where
other black figures are
waiting; & are draped
in iridescent obsidian
atop creatures with un
known names & will
always will be unknown;
& don’t look ready for
war but if they dismount
from these always un
known creatures they’ll
have to disrobe, unsheathe
their javelins, & let
the anatomy of forever
rot in the veins of who
they didn’t come for;
& who knows who’ll
pray for this; we won’t be
spared to exodus; & how
that, when they hold our
hands, we’ll have to snip
off our ears, spoon out
our eyes, clip off our
noses, & singe ourselves
on the regurgitated clouds
the black figures hymn out;
& rage & rage & rage
like effigies in skylight,
their first wave of doom.

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J’Sun Howard is a dancemaker and poet living in Chicago, IL. His work can be seen in The Body, Manifold, Bird’s Thump, 3rd Language, Chicago IRL, Danspace Project’s Constellations and Influences, Inkwell, Garland Court Review, and Storyglossia.