Back to Issue Thirty-Five

etymology of “fuck12”



bang! is a troublesome way to introduce yourself
one of us is indeed a squadron of riots unfolding
the other ​of us​ is a cityscape choking on tear gas
rebellion is the most natural form of self defense
slave catching dressed in uniform is still a first punch
fred hampton’s front door said, ​you dropped something
angela davis’ afro said, ​yall tried it​! assata said, nothin much
once i tried talking a killer, i have the handcuff scars to prove it
in a matter of seconds i’ve seen improbable cause devour innocence
your prejudicial bloodlust is off its leash chewing on my sister again
your great great granddaddy was a double barrel shotgun
you sound just like him.


Darius Simpson is a writer, educator, and skilled living room dancer from Akron, Ohio. He received his BA in Political Science from Eastern Michigan University. He is a two-time finalist at the College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational (CUPSI). Darius is a candidate for his MFA in Creative Writing-Poetry from Mills College. Currently he works as an educator with Youth Speaks and SF Jazz in schools all over the Bay Area. His poem “ma’am i’m sorry to tell you, your son is d-” received an honorable mention in the 2020 Sonia Sanchez-Langston Hughes Poetry Contest.

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