Aaron Samuels: Poet of the Week

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Broken Ghazal in the Voice of My Brother

Irrefutable fact / my brother is black jewish
Kink hair & a wide nose / that’s gotta be black, jewish

He said look in the mirror / naked / if it ain’t black—jewish
If we don’t do it to ourselves / first / then they do it to us

Said he loves countin’ stacks / is that black? / jewish?
Said we loves eating chicken cause we black-jewish!

Said, you gotta keep it real / listen to black music
If you wanna keep your teeth / you ain’t allowed to act jewish

And that’s jewish / Night of the broken glass jewish
They’ll beat your face in with a bat / until its black.

They raped your great grandma, and that’s a fact, jewish
Say a prayer for the secrets your family keeps, Kaddish

See Aaron, you run / but I learned to attack: jewish
In order to survive, you gotta be black, stupid

Let ‘em tattoo my arm, that’s how I act Jewish
That’s how I be black / but that’s not what you did

Got yourself a “good job,” where nobody’s black / jewish
Cut the slang off your tongue / it’s too black; jewish

And, you never came home / Aaron / where it’s black-jewish
And not coming home / is black

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