The Uncanny Valley
After Kara Walker’s “A Subtlety” at the Domino Sugar Factory
They came in between me and the Sugar Baby.
A marvel. Inside a moment of prayer.
Flick of blonde hair. Phone in my face: Take our photo?!
“Repeat Repeat Repeat”
—Kara Walker, Do You Like Crème
in Your Coffee and Chocolate in Your Milk?
Right here. Still wet air.
Smiles and crass. Snaps of our nipples.
This is hip. This is art.
This is it
molasses. Blanched white.
you girls, like, always need a fight!
“…the romance of it,
the storytelling—it was so rich
and epic, and that was what I hadn’t
expected. I hadn’t expected to be titillated
in the way that stories like that are meant to
titillate. And, at the same time, it was so much
fodder for the work that I wanted to do.”
on exploiting the exploitation in Gone With the Wind
This is church. This is collateral. This is holy terrain.
I am ekphrasis, imbued to the frame.
“The Uncanny Valley” is from Running to Stand Still. Copyright © 2019 by Kimberly Reyes. The poem appears with the permission of Omnidawn Publishing. All rights reserved.
About this Poem
This poem appeared in the Re:Print section of American Poets, Fall-Winter 2019.
Kimberly Reyes is the author of Running to Stand Still (Omnidawn, 2019), a finalist for Civil Coping Mechanism’s 2017 Mainline Competition. Reyes is the recipient of honors from the Poetry Foundation, the Fulbright Program, and the Academy of American Poets. She lives in Cork, Ireland.
Date Published: 2019-10-01
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/uncanny-valley-0