written by Alessaundra Pierce

You are my father, who sits on the stairs and cries,
crosses himself before dinner.
Weren’t you excommunicated at birth?
Because your mama decided six kids was too much
and you, being the last.

Thank you Father for the food we are about to receive.
And the nourishment of our bodies.

Also, your papa was done, drawn
in chalk- a straight line from taxi cab driver to doctor.
Only interrupted by the hell mama raised when she 
realized a stupid man had fooled her.

You said sometimes, while he would play guitar
to the outside window,
she’d watch and pray for him 
to fall out.
I think, sometimes, about the end of our
dinner prayer.

And in Jesus name we pray,

I know that every time you spoke to God
you only asked for us.


Hello! I’m a black girl living in Austin. I have very small ears and very large feet. I went to the University of Texas and majored in English. I thought about going to law school, but you know how it goes.

Alessaundra Pierce

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