Editors’ Choice, July 2-8, “Why I Leave the States,” By Bonnie Jill Emanuel

The mind wanders. The spirit wanders. That is our condition, sometimes our longing, sometimes the heights of our capacity. Enjoy this in-place sojourn from Bonnie Jill Emanuel.

      I go to Caracas.

My god the coastal mountains, plantains, cocoa air.

I go there
having never been to an equator.

Slip down the fire escape & out a window
                  I go searching.

I wait waiting
for some tropical Andean downpour
to never actually occur.

                                               Which is not to say
I never feast on bloodberry or seagrape,
swallow one scant drop of regret
or that this is a tale
of me sprawled across my desk
composing a text
with my hands clenching a package of Sharpies
& my face in a glycolic acid sugarcane
homemade mask,
raw.

Bonnie Jill EmanuelBonnie Jill Emanuel’s poems appear in American Poetry Review, Mid-American Review, SWWIM, Love’s Executive Order, Ruminate, Laurel Review, Chiron Review and elsewhere. She earned a Creative Writing MFA at the City College of New York, where she received the Jerome Lowell DeJur Award in Creative Writing and the Stark Poetry Prize. Born in Detroit, she now lives in New York.

For other Editors’ Choices, please visit:
Silence – Pete Mackey – First-Place Winner
Russian Novel – Gabrielle Langley – Second-Place Winner (tie)
The Juiciest Pear – Issa M. Lewis – Second-Place Winner (tie)
Fat Family – Robert Nisbet

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