The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: “Blues Triumphant” by Jonterri Gadson



This is about singing into a brush

with synthetic hair tangled in its bristles

in front of a spit-spotted mirror in a bathroom

where every song is your song and roaches

breakdance in slow motion when they’re caught

in the blink and the buzz of the dying

fluorescent light while your hand wriggles electric,

trying to brush, gargle, and rinse in the click

and the three-second pause while the CD player

shuffles to the next disc. Do it all wet and naked

if this is about a broken broom stick, the handle

of a ratty mop, an unwrapped tampon, a remote control,

a black tennis shoe, an ink pen, a wire hanger, a dead light

bulb, a can of mousse, a freshly shaven bald head, my fist,

your fist, or anyone’s.

This selection comes from the book of poetry, “Blues Triumphant” by Jonterri Gadson, which is available to purchase here from YesYes Books.

Jonterri Gadson is the author of the chapbooks Interruptions (MIEL, 2014) and Pepper Girl (YesYes Books, 2012). She has received scholarships and fellowships from Cave Canem, Bread Loaf, University of Dayton and the University of Virginia where she received her MFA in Creative Writing. She is also a graduate of the Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop. Her poetry has appeared in CallalooLos Angeles ReviewThe Collagist, and other journals. She currently serves as Assistant Professor of Creative Writing/English at Bloomfield, College in New Jersey. Follow her on Twitter at @JaytotheTee.

librecht baker. Long Beach, CA native. Member of Dembrebrah West African Drum and Dance Ensemble. MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College. VONA/Voices and Lambda Literary Writer Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices Fellow. Poetry is forthcoming in Writing the Walls Down: A Convergence of LGBTQ Voices (Trans-Genre Press) and is included in CHORUS: A Literary Mixtape (MTv Books).


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