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This never was a melting pot, but boiling.
Never a mosaic, but fractured.

Never a rainbow, but Mood Indigo.
Something there is that doesn’t love a wall, Frost said,
then called his neighbor
an old-stone savage armed.

A callous can grow on the heart as on a hand,
turning those outside the pale to faceless skin.

Nothing thrives in concrete or on wire
but locks of lost loves, prayer flags of torn clothing,
sunset graffiti fading in the camera’s lidless eye.

The desperate barriers where
stateless people die.

First published in the
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on September 8, 2019.

Angele Ellis's poetry appeared on a movie theater marquee, after
winning Pittsburgh Filmmakers' G-20 Haiku Contest. She is author of
Arab on Radar (Six Gallery), whose poems won a fellowship from the
Pennsylvania Council on the Arts,
Spared (A Main Street Rag Editors'
Choice Chapbook), and
Under the Kaufmann's Clock (Six Gallery), a
poetry-prose hybrid inspired by her adopted city of Pittsburgh, PA, with
photographs by Rebecca Clever. She is a longtime editor and
community activist, and has committed civil disobedience seven times.

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Previously published in
Eleventh Transmission:
"Marked Safe" by Mark Ekunno.

Published March 26, 2020

Special Project: 45 Poems of Protest


by Angele Ellis
(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA)
Eleventh Transmission: "Un/Mending" by Angele Ellis
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