"I make you a box of darkness with a bird in its heart."
~ Terrance Hayes
Car and computer parts, a third
of all firearms that wind up in
the hands of your hunters and school
shooters. Buddha's yellow hand,
buddha's green apple lying at the bottom
of the bin because none of you know
how to eat them. In factories, workers young
as sixteen bevel the edges of your
new smartphones. And in sweatshops, we
push collar folds quick under
mechanized sewing needles. Who remembers
which plants make the indigo dye,
which the yellow? Our mothers taught us cool,
clear water for the rinse. Winking
seed-pearls distract from the pains
of our long labor. Sometimes
the labels include our names. Sometimes,
we embroider a letter or cry for help.
Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) was recently appointed Poet Laureate of the Commonwealth of Virginia (2020-2022). She is Co-Winner of the 2019 Crab Orchard Open Competition in Poetry for Maps for Migrants and Ghosts (Southern Illinois University Press, September 2020). She is the winner of the 2015 Resurgence Prize (UK), the world’s first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. She is the author of What is Left of Wings, I Ask (2018 Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Prize, selected by former US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey); Bright as Mirrors Left in the Grass (Kudzu House Press eChapbook selection for Spring 2015), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (Utah State University Press, 2014 May Swenson Prize), Night Willow (Phoenicia Publishing, 2014), The Saints of Streets (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2013), Juan Luna’s Revolver (2009 Ernest Sandeen Prize, University of Notre Dame Press), and nine other books. She is a member of the core faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University which she directed from 2009-2015; she also teaches classes at The Muse Writers’ Center in Norfolk. In 2018, she was the inaugural Glasgow Distinguished Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University. When she isn’t writing, reading, or teaching, she cooks with her family, knits, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.