After Emily Dickinson’s “There is no Frigate like a Book

the small begin of i
in to look 
all the way
the wall of 
books that break 
the heart of a 
child open to love   
who does not yet
know desire except 
when she desires 
cathedrals of words that gather 
await the eye 
—to see was to love—
hungered on hunger 
sweeping across a paginated world
in misery in
love in words spent with 
books and time
algorithms of the
ever in spirit 
the extended minute 
stretched to 
goodbye to 
leaved portals
the worlds 
of other to


Copyright © 2023 by M. NourbeSe Philip. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on August 31, 2023, by the Academy of American Poets. 

for Jaiden Peter Morgan

A good poem
is summer
                 my nephew said 
             mirage rising 
from corn fields
pollen on our tongues
each syllable 
flecked with sunbeams
and names not said 
shiye’ you should know 
the voice isn’t ours alone
    but a dwelling space
    a hooghan’s
    cool inner darkness
    before ceremony 
    it is you 
    who will heal 
    these wounds
a good poem 
is song
            I said
so let there be mountains
singing in all directions
let there be laughter
uninterrupted and innocent 
shiye’ what joy you are

Copyright © 2021 by Manny Loley. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on November 1, 2021, by the Academy of American Poets.