BY JOANNA C. VALENTE
As the senior managing editor at Luna Luna and the founding editor at Yes Poetry, you could say writing is important to me, especially poetry. For me, it’s vital to highlight poetic voices in order to support literature, activism, and expression.
Here are three of my favorite poems I read recently.
Danez Smith - “acknowledgments”
“& how many times have you loved me without my asking?
how often have i loved a thing because you loved it?
Savannah Slone - “at night, she takes out the trash”
“it is that hour of the night when the mud of my leftovers sing out to me. her flat tongue is against my carotid artery against the counter when I smell it. over there. overfilled. avocado smoke. groceries, the forgotten, the intentions, the cupidity. the lingerings
fruit fly eruption. sullied diapers. freckled banana peel drop. wrung out, worn earl gray tea bags. my own little landfill. the mud of my leftovers. my strawberry ooze. ginger-tipped q-tips. holding my nose like an amateur swimmer. staggered dance through the lamp lit mess of the day, yellow drawstrings digging into the lines of my palms”
Aqdas Aftab - “All Death”
“A friend texts another suicide attempt, another tactonic plate splits.
Weeping in panic, Azraeel promises, he did not plot all death.
Exhausted, you beg her, “tear open my scalp and lick my bleeding brain.”
The tools are ready. “No, use your nails.” In bed you forgot all death.
Tonight you want hard choking, her curls coiled around your neck.
Sweet way to lose breath. Maybe her tenderness will cumblot all death.”
Joanna C. Valente is a human who lives in Brooklyn, New York. They are the author of Sirs & Madams, The Gods Are Dead, Marys of the Sea, Sexting Ghosts, Xenos, No(body) (forthcoming, Madhouse Press, 2019), and is the editor of A Shadow Map: Writing by Survivors of Sexual Assault. They received their MFA in writing at Sarah Lawrence College. Joanna is the founder of Yes Poetry and the senior managing editor for Luna Luna Magazine. Some of their writing has appeared in The Rumpus, Them, Brooklyn Magazine, BUST, and elsewhere. Joanna also leads workshops at Brooklyn Poets. joannavalente.com / Twitter: @joannasaid / IG: joannacvalente / FB: joannacvalente