By Kai’Leaf Ratliff
I coughed up all night, Nalusa Falaya,
Midwestern sky. That December 1st denotes,
a reverence for our father under these very clouds,
piers from the harbor to the sea; we all must
pass through. A Midwestern cold,
wet cough, serrated vessels, clogged with loss,
condensates a whisper that rebukes the dark;
til it perishes in morning’s breath.
Kai’Leaf Ratliff has studied literature and poetry at the Evergreen State College in Washington state. As a queer African America writer, his work is mostly subversive: focusing mainly on his travels, subcultures, personal experiences, and spirituality. He is currently pursuing a degree in education in Fort Wayne, Indiana.