Issue 12: Detroit, Michigan

Contributors: Mateo Alden, Jared Berman, Emmy Bright, adrienne maree brown, Halima Cassells, Nandi Comer, Katelyn Durst, Fringe Society, Sally Howell, Razi Jafri, Corbin LaMont, Nadine Marshall, Zoe Minikes, Pastor Barry Randolph, Felix Jordan Rucker, Ellen Rutt and Thing Thing.

Editors: Corbin LaMont, Sarah Lewis and Zoe Minikes

11" x 21.5" Cold Offset Press, Full Color.

Printed by Valley Printers.

In Anticipation Of The 2020 Census

The Government Says I Can’t Be Counted As A Person

Written by Nadine Marshall

I spread apart my fingers
decide the width between each,
keep count of the hands
sliding in that space.

Once: on the streets in Ann Arbor,
a man yelled all the descriptions of hell
as I kissed a lover with my hungry mouth,
pretend boy].

In Detroit: I wander
the streets with a lover
who’s hand I slide out of
as we count spaces disappearing

a house there

corner store

a library

a church,

all gone



Once: a greying woman
said I shouldn’t call myself
queer & she meant
this as a compliment, OH...
if she only knew
the oddity of a genderless
black body whose hands sometimes
belong to someone else

Once: I sat in a church as the pastor
called me burning things
the ache of a wooden pew claimed
saved instead of liberated

In Detroit:
every empty church
whispers my name, so I send
a blue ghost whispering
sweet somethings in the ears
of saved saints who only dream desire.

In a Dream: i am
80 & dancing close
with a lover to the gentle
crack of an organ & saints
smile & nod & hallelujah over
a love found instead of buried
too soon.

Tomorrow: a census worker
will find me, weeping
on the front porch of my home,
they will reach for my hand
& I’ll be surprised they can see me.