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Angeline D'Balentine/ Spring Issue

Angeline D'Balentine graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a degree in creative writing, focusing on scriptwriting, while also minoring in art. Her academic journey encompassed various forms of writing, ranging from poetry to research writing and journalism. Throughout her career, she has achieved notable milestones, including the publication of several poems and the adaptation of one poem into a performance piece featured in an off-Broadway monologue. This particular show was hosted by Stacey London from the renowned TV show "What Not to Wear." Additionally, she has seen success in the realm of stage and film, with multiple stage scripts produced into plays and one film script adapted into an independent film. She also lends her expertise as a script doctor, contributing to the refinement and enhancement of various scripts.

"Pure Poetry"


Toxins, caffeine, nicotine

flowing like a river through the blood stream...


Mama gave me life back thirty two years.

Out I come with the night on my skin.

My eyes like stars and Mama's face was a moon...


Her eyes,

 her nostrils,

  her mouth a crater

   with sweet Mississippi Mud Pie

glowing in the cracks of her teeth.

She whispered with tears and fears into my ears of poetry-

   for the sake of Pure Poetry.


Pure Poetry?  Why mama give me a name like that?


A name with flowing lines and stanzy form-

 In and out, above and below, behind and bent over

  for those blue lines of white paper.

They knew I's the lines of poetry!


Magical black words and cursive curves and dotted eyes...

   ...crossed T's of poetry.

Pens dippin' in me wantin' black ink for their white paper,

making Pure Poetry flow...

Just the sound of me rolls off their tongue.


White paper, brown paper, tan paper,

   You name it paper -

 Absorbing the flow of my intoxined blood of Pure Poetry.


Pure Poetry.

  That's I lying on the paper as their wanted black ink,

    with red ink splatterin' and swirling into ebony dreams,

      staining Pure Poetry.


My eyes are churning mercury tears

 and they look and see,

    But do they care?

They look, but they ain't seeing, cuz they ain't feelin' -

  As they rape my stanzas,

   My mama's pages,

     My Nana's chapters,

       and Pure Poetry's ancestral books sittin'

        on the shelves in a library of silenced time.


Yeah, that librarian sittin' at the information desk whispering, "shh."

  Her information all wrong!

 Her name tag typed and spaced on a black background

    saying in white words,

       "Keep silent and smile, girl.  Be meek and weak. 

         Lift your cup of tea and be me."


Why her Mama give her a name like that?


Pure Poetry's source ain't found at no information desk.

  Goes to isles A through Z and you'll walk reality.


Sure, I'll tip my tea cup and watch it break beyond

 the reaches of my charcoaled limbs as black tea spills and

   green tea leaves stain the paper.


And Mama's face will smile back in the reflection of me.

They all smiling back at me,

  Mama and Nana and generations survived.

My magical black words of courage speak out!


Hand me the ancestral books and I's will blow the hushed dust away,

 and proudly hang the sign of closure on the door of this library of silence!

Inspired by Toni Morrison's book "The Bluest Eye"


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