What They Speak When They Speak To Me is an interactive poem about mistaken identity and the confusion – amusing and alarming – that happens when people believe you are somebody you are not. Three friends. — J.L.
Poetry for Excitable [Mobile] Media
The Great Migration is a poem about leaving, about the excitement of heading out into a great unknown. It’s also a poem about expulsion, about diaspora, about being forced to from home, in some sense about my emigration to Canada. Yet it’s also a poem about surrendering to the excitement and the compulsion, about the reluctant realization that perhaps fundamental change is needed to keep on living. — J.L.
Smooth Second Bastard is a meditation on the difference between being asked “where ya from” and being asked “are you from around here?” Growing up where and how I did, I tend to see insider-outsider dynamics before I see prejudice. Such a viewpoint can be gracious or naïve, and I sometimes find it difficult to tell which. — J.L.
A silent winter day. A long drive together, in the midst of going our separate ways. Trying to figure it all out, before memory crushes us and the snow buries our tracks. The World Was White is a homage to the many, many road trips – short and long – I took across northern California with friends while a teenager. Now, much later, I have come to realize that it is also about growing up one of the few brown kids in white, rural mountain country. — J.L.