3 Poems from Jamica A. Whitaker

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Happy December! I hope you are enjoying the holiday season! This month’s theme is Natural Beauty and so the poets for this months each show us the various ways we can look at beauty. The first poet, Jamica A. Whitaker’s work show us that we can find beauty even in the most difficult moments and environments. Our survival is beautiful. Enjoy!


Prelude to a Hustle

Speeding nowhere.

Horns blaring.

Music pumping.

Engines revving.

Tailpipes roaring.

Scheduling evening pickups

promising not to be late.

Bird songs drift on the summer breeze,

float through fingertips


dancing above car windows.

Empty school buses rattle home

while pedestrians in flip flops

bop their heads to soundtracks flowing through earbuds.

Humidity makes skin glisten while they talk lottery numbers

and the best they've ever had.

The sun sinks a little.

Lion shaped clouds resemble ancient family crests,

turned to dust, subject to time.

The people squint,

catch a glimpse of their dreams deferred

by the stop sign at the end of the street

or the red light at the end of the block

or the ruby lips of the woman

who adorns the corner with partially cornrowed hair

who spits on the sidewalk without a care.

Lime green swooshes catch a ride on a dusty moped.

Slow rhymes drag across the pavement like a smoker on a cigarette,

waiting in line at the barber shop for that fresh fade

or tight shape up.

The door slams on conversation,

our words cease to be,

as we hurry to nowhere with nowhere to be.


Clinical Confession

The clickety clack of the keys rearranges my pulse.

Typing only makes me nervous in my therapist’s office.

Heavy footsteps on hardwood floors echo in my chest.

My heart chokes me.

I want to flee.

A guy in camouflage pants throws things.

Slams doors.

Fuck! He spits onto the lobby floor.

His anger brushes up against me,

falls into the wells of my eyes 

contaminates me.

Can’t stay.

This is a bad idea.

What am I doing here?

Ma’am, follow me.

I clunk up the steps.

Hinges ungreased



Borrow the lion’s courage.

Ask for the scarecrow’s heart.

I don’t want it.

Give it back.

Naked on the sofa, words

drift from the ceiling.

I stare until they cease.


Betray my heart.

Flee it says.

Betray my thoughts.

Silence it commands.

I speak my timid truth.

Then back down the hardwood steps

anxiety in tow

draped in fear

tears in my purse.

The sun only warms my skin

As the guy in the camo pants

Dribbles, shoots a basketball.



Nappy salvation

“You got that slave hair.” 

Floating across the Atlantic in chains. 

Pristine waters forever soiled. 

My hair the waves that toss ships with breathing cargo. 

My hair the sea that welcomes them. 

Swallows them whole. 



Into mystical terrain. 

“It’s so nappy.” 

Bondage tangles. 

Freedom knotted to strange fruit. 

Choking at laminate lunch counters. 

Venom stained cheeks licked by leashed beasts. 

Dried leaves, dirt, fear, 


cornered in obsidian coils. 

Praying cleansing seas purge loathing spirits, 

drown the pain. 

“I hate your hair.” 

Jim Crow declares. 

Our existence is terrorism. 

Our disappearance satisfies. 

Our resistance incomprehensible. 




like hair to the whole. 

A cosmic map back home. 

Jamica is a writer and communicator who uses her talents to empower others while empowering herself.

Motto: Love and respect yourself first.

Social Media: @afRHOangel