Lamentations for New Jersey: Route 9 (Tonnele Avenue)

By Truth Thomas


Sorrow mourns the daughters who think they’re still alive

tapping veins of vampire streets—our daughters, who are


told they’re still alive, beaten toothless, blood drained by

the game—our daughters, haunting humping roads, eyes


like caves—our daughters, zombie-walking after rape. There

is a balm in Gilead, but there is also a brake light procession,


a repast of cum-scented cash, a living wake for someone’s

child, riding in the front seat of death, rolling out a condom


like police tape.




Truth Thomas is a singer, songwriter, and poet, born in Knoxville, Tennessee, raised in Washington, DC. He is the author of three collections of poetry: Party of Black (Flipped Eye/Mouthmark Press, 2006), A Day of Presence (Flipped Eye Publishing, 2008), and Bottle of Life (Flipped Eye Publishing, 2010). His fourth book, Speak Water, is scheduled for publication in the fall of 2011. He serves on editorial boards of both the Tidal Basin Review, and the Little Patuxent Review. Some of his work has appeared in: The Progressive, Quiddity Literary Journal, and The 100 Best African American Poems (edited by Nikki Giovanni).


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