Friday, January 10, 2014

Poem of the Week: celeste doaks


Single Twin Band Crush

--inspired by Joe Millar's Losers and Winners

Aaron and Anita, the first real twins I ever personally knew,
drum majored our ragged band in high school called--
the Marching LaSalle Lions. Anita was the outgoing,
mouthy one, but I was star-struck by Aaron, the brooder.

I adored his strange pink olivey skin--always tan,
even in bitter Midwest winters--and his black spikey hair.
Of course those were the late 80's, and the whole world reeled
from Reaganomics, bad pop icons like Robert Palmer and his red-lipped
dames, and the Challenger crashed down on us like hail pelting
car hoods. Even my parents cautiously skated on the thin ice
of their marriage. No music could change America's forecast then.

But when Aaron coached me on flute, he calmed this confusing
world. He was the one who taught me the crescendos and intermezzos
of John Philip Sousa. As the world stammered on off-beat,
he was the one teaching me delicate rhythms
of quarter & eighths marching on regardless.

-celeste doaks 
Used by permission.

Poet and journalist celeste doaks is the recipient of a 2012 Lucille Clifton Scholarship to attend Squaw Valley Writers Workshop. Her work has garnered a variety of accolades including the 2009 Academy of American Poets Graduate Prize and the 2010 AWP WC&C Scholarship; she has also been awarded residencies at Atlantic Center of the Arts and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown. Her journalism has appeared in the Huffington Post, Village Voice, Time Out New York, and QBR (Quarterly Black Book Review). Celeste received her MFA from North Carolina State University in 2010 and is a member of the Carolina African American Writers Collective(CAAWC). Her poems have been published in multiple on-line and print publications such as Asheville Poetry Review, Obsidian, Beltway Poetry Quarterly,and forthcoming in the new anthology Rabbit Ears: TV Poems. Doaks currently teaches creative writing at Morgan State University.

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