Posted by: tsopr | January 9, 2013

Darrel Alejandro Holnes, American Poet

Darrel Alejandro Holnes’ poems have previously appeared or are forthcoming in Kweli, The Caribbean Writer, Callaloo, The Best American Poetry blog, and elsewhere. His degrees in creative writing are from the University of Michigan, and the University of Houston. He has received scholarships to Bread Loaf, Cave Canem, and various residencies, most recently to VCCA, and currently resides in New York, NY.

Featured Poem of Darrel Alejandro Holnes


He drums loudest when she’s around, silence too sour a sound for seduction.
But heavy drumming deafens her

and fangs drag across his chest                   as she saves herself by eating
                what’s beating            her            to death
but keeps his carcass for company—
                 sweetness in the quiet
explosion of arteries, in the quiet
                                digestion of cartilage and bone—
perhaps a mute melody
                               perhaps a melodious murder.

Swallowing notes in lumps of flesh
                    she savors stopping heart-breaking rhythms,
until guilt, like a drumstick,              strikes her belly,
                    guts      drum up a dirge.

Here is how we make music
               even when we cannot stand its sound,
love bellowing, found or lost.

Surrender to palpitating
                                             rup-a-pum percussion,
                 open aortas only able to bleed wanting songs.
Drink, or lend your ear                         and raise your voice; to be living
                  is to sing the inescapable choral hymn:

                  r-r-rup-a-pum                                         boom,

r-r-rup-a-pum                                crash,

                 r-r-rup-a-pum                                          boom,

r-r-rup-a-pum                              smash!

Copyright © 2013 Darrel Alejandro Holnes


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