ALL THE FEMINIST POETS features a single poem and an interview from a feminist poet that we love.
LaToya Jordan is a writer from Brooklyn, New York. Her poetry has appeared in Mobius: The Journal for Social Change, MiPOesias, Radius, and is forthcoming in Mom Egg Review. She is the author of the chapbook Thick-Skinned Sugar (Finishing Line Press). She received an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University Los Angeles. Her biggest fans are her husband and pre-schooler.
White sashes embroidered
with gold letters
showcase our locations:
Bottom of the East River
Abandoned Lot Southwest of Philly
Burnt House in North Carolina
Buried in a Park in Seattle
Last year’s winner pins
the crown to my head.
From Miss Ditch in Ashland County
to Miss Missing.
Mascara tears and black eyes
There she is, Miss Missing.
You probably saw my college graduation
photo on the news and in the papers.
All-American face and form. Flawless skin
now dressed in tiny red mouths
trapped in rigor mortis screams.
I pray for someone to hear
our remains. We sing a raspy song,
reenactment of last breaths
to welcome the new pageant girls.
The newest sisters of our piecemeal gang
include the one with fingerprint tattoos,
a girl who carries her head like a purse,
and the woman whose baby trails behind her,
still connected by the umbilical cord.
The girls add pushpins to the map
on the wall backstage. X marks the spot.
A rainbow of pins, thousands of them
crisscross with our limbs
like cross country railroad tracks.
Find any of the other contestants,
Miss Landfill Los Angeles or
Miss Abandoned Car in Brooklyn,
and I bet that beneath brown decomposing skin,
their bones are as pale white as mine.
(published by Radius)