BUILDING NICOLE’S MAMA
for the 6th grade class of Lillie C. Evans School,
Liberty City, Miami
I am astonished at their mouthful names–
Lakinishia, Chevellanie, Delayo, Fumilayo–
their ragged rebellions and lip-glossed pouts,
and all those pants drooped as drapery.
I rejoice when they kiss my face, whisper wet
and urgent in my ear, make me their obsession
because I have brought them poetry.