...and while we're counting down to the eclipse with our slow dip through "Coronagraphy," checkout the interview The Writer's Center published last National Poetry Month along w/ a republication of “John Henry’s First Real Swing—” here:
Stuck: something here about black folks—all of us no matter our gender, our shade, our size—finding ourselves together-and-apart in a cycle of oppression that fits us all a bit differently. Throughout these poems, John Henry and Polly Ann find themselves in quicksand of like origin. Their experience is unique to each of them, but both are being pulled under.
Notice: an aberrant incandescence wobble back and forth between and within them. Polly Ann is the tougher of the two in many ways no matter that John Henry is physically stronger. Both show off sharp foresight.
Wonder: can/will any foresight save them/us? Polly Ann opens the final sonnet with what might be read as echo, reformed and differently born: “I can tell our futures too. Listen here — ” She might/may/must be read as something entirely else too....
Feel: all of that difference. John Henry’s perspective is overpowering and close-up, hot and large compared to Polly Ann’s. He is legend, as you note, and she is footnote.
...read it all right here: http://thewriterscenter.blogspot.com/2016/04/q-john-henrys-first-real-swing-by.html
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