Cento for Surrender

By RAGE HEZEKIAH

Nostalgia is a well- 
intentioned wound, 
you have to hold 
it in mind all at once—
you have to need it 
enough. I’ve been
running from what 
needs me. Perhaps 
we are not responsible 
for the lives of our 
parents. We become 
a beautiful collection 
of knots trembling 
on the floor. Why 
should we mourn?
Isn’t this the history 
we want, one in which 
we survive? Mold me
daily into a bridge
between what I have 
forgotten and what 
I owe. My throat 
is full of low country, 
but here is a world
where the people 
I love gather in small 
rooms with not enough 
chairs. What I remember 
is everything, but I
know that can’t be.

 

Rage Hezekiah is a Cave Canem, MacDowell, and Ragdale Fellow who earned her MFA from Emerson College. She is the author of Unslakable and Stray Harbor. Rage expresses gratitude to the following poets for the use of their lines: Clint Smith, Joanna Klink, Karisma Price, Claudia Rankine, Morgan Parker, Diana Khoi Nguyen, Aaron Coleman, and Hieu Minh Nguyen. You can find out more about her writing at RageHezekiah.com.

[Purchase Issue 21 here.]

Cento for Surrender

Related Posts

Lost Farm

Lost Farm

CHELSEA STEINAUER-SCUDDER
My father—a botanist and grasslands ecologist with an always-beard and a worse-for-wear baseball cap—learned his trade amongst the shushing, windswept prairies of Nebraska. He never intended to voluntarily cast himself twenty-five miles out to sea.

Kentucky farmland

64-West & KY State Fair

D.S. WALDMAN
And how, / if we keep going, pushing ourselves farther / from ourselves, we’d see, eventually, the blankness / we were one day born into. / I forget what you / told me after—I think it had something to do / with loneliness.     

JOANNA ELEFTHERIOU headshot

This Way Back: An Interview with Joanna Eleftheriou

JOANNA ELEFTHERIOU
In this insightful interview with Cameron Finch, Joanna Eleftheriou provides readers with a mini-manual on how to engage in the dialectic of identity, confront the privilege of choosing an identity, and how writers prioritize discovery.