Published on Academy of American Poets (

pidgin toe

on di saké menu no descriptive like quiet & smooth.
lean & firm. dry seems redundant. di comedic
pause dat carry so much inna tree letas. wen
di flesh breaks, a ranginamu glimma free itself to become
sky misty aan di temple. a strait of islands set against
a hazel setting inna di west. kolo pollo. morning is belated
aftanoon whey mourning dove & starling sing der
medley of five songs wich scratch at nickel clouds.
showcase loose silver reatas. aroha. der claws carving
tools. der beaks pick & sift gravel. it said inna myth
dat di rooster was sent down from heaven to shape
di earth. dat di world was once all wata. dat di rooster
no call out ‘pōkokohua’. wat yuh create w/ yrs out of wood,
metal & lacquer? di descriptive begin again. dreamy. reka reka
            engari ia mīere.
ae, dry is practical. perhaps necessary for di lineage. di sky 
neither dusk nor honolulu azure. di sparrow medley
now tree or two. di manner of tings arrive wen di sun cracks
di pastel smear. in di end, e taku hoa pūmau purotu,
                                             di hair gladly protest shampoo.

            e taku tamatāne ngaro mokemoke,

in di end, gochira get devoured by sand dollah.


Copyright @ 2014 by LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-a-Day on July 30, 2014.

About this Poem

“‘pidgin toe’ is a play off of the term ‘pigeon toe’ which describes a medical condition where a person’s toes will point inward when walking. Using this as a prompt, the poem acts as a kind of whimsical ‘self corrective’ for the reader/subject whose vision might be in need of ‘straightening.’ I complicate this curious praise poem with my desire for linguistic and cultural discourse by writing in English and a loose Pidgin with occasional moments of Maori, Japanese and Spanish. The additional layering of Yoruba folklore, geography, Godzilla movies, birds from an urban wildlife guide and use of caesurae help to further shape meaning where meaning is but a nickname for chance encounters.”

— LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs


LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs

LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs is the author of TwERK (Belladonna*, 2013). She lives in New York City.

Date Published: 2014-07-30

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