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  • In the Year that the Trash Took Itself Out
  • Yalie Kamara (bio)

In the year that the trash took itself out,you cleaned up as best you could.

The houseflies, with their foreverdevotion to detritus, congregated

at the shore of your mouth. Theywaited to catch the bile climbing up

your throat. Swarming around you,they fed at your lips until they

fattened, then followed you out ofmy living room. You always did

smell like you had something to hide:when the stench of your apple spice lotion

and hunger lifted from around me,I learned to taste again. Before I could ask

why you disappeared, I saw a noteon the door: you confessed that God

made a lightning rod ofyour intestines

every time you smiled,quietly wishing

to offer my breath as hallowedsacrifice to your wreckage. [End Page 52]

Yalie Kamara

YALIE KAMARA is a Sierra Leonean-American writer and native of Oakland, California. She currently serves as Assistant Editor of Black Camera: An International Film Journal. She is the author of A Brief Biography of My Name (African Poetry Book Fund/Akashic Books, 2018) and When the Living Sing (Ledge Mule Press, 2017). Some of her poetry, fiction, and translations have been featured in The Poetry Society of America, Vinyl Poetry and Prose, Puerto del Sol, and Indiana University Press. She was a finalist for the 2017 Brunel International African Poetry Prize, a 2017 National Book Critics Circle Emerging Critics Fellow, and a fellow of the 2016 Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop. She received an MFA in creative writing (poetry) from Indiana University, Bloomington, and an MA in French culture and civilization from Middlebury College. She will begin her doctoral studies in English literature and creative writing at the University of Cincinnati in fall 2018.



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