LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs

A writer, vocalist and sound artist, LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs is the author of TwERK (Belladonna, 2013). Her interdisciplinary work has been featured at the Brooklyn Museum, the poesiefestival berlin,the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Walker Art Center. As a curator and director, she has staged events at BAM Café, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, The David Rubenstein Atrium, The Highline, Poets House and El Museo del Barrio. A native of Harlem, LaTasha is the recipient of numerous awards; of them include New York Foundation for the Arts, Barbara Deming Memorial Grant, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Jerome Foundation, the Japan-US Friendship Commission, Creative Capital and the Whiting Literary Award. Co-founder and co-editor of Coon Bidness/SO4 magazine, she is a Center for Women Writers 2017 Writer-in-Residence at Salem College.


Myō – yū1

little iyawo on the fade on. straight ain’t a directional ornament.
tempo is here. strips of newsprint. wheat paste onto your nana’s
sharecropper walls. so too is oxum’s needle. rummage contents of whale oil
as beer piss bottles catch spirits. the crystal road is a rural bling/less one.
down & up. wind-up the ocean. sound the agogo for omolu. maré de arco-íris2.
feito para bobos
3
love struck passages in the diloggun. buzios bedazzle would be
brides whose rings are invisible in the cross hatch of scrap pot holders.
a coconut drops the needle. a linha nunca é reta4. this poem is indirect.
meant unfixed. cease resistance. spirits might enter. spirits might escape.
nail rust up nostril. ogum’s dandruff . um kaxi bites like a reminder5.
like how silica cuts into the lungs for wampum.
purple & white. whelk & qhahog clam.
prestige in codes. like gold chains. chinese brass coins. like Mr. T.
like indicators of worth & obligation. birth. no direct meaning.
no straight line. just a quilt of celestial ibeji trickery. a que hora? ask Flava Flav.
at present a czech miçanga. u a sim. um a nao. oxoosi’s bow aint’ broke.
arrow ain’t bent. he be forte. w/ that angola swag. oshumare handled that.
somente a linha6. the row of glass. resin. seeds. my lineage be a slave trade
be a fur trade be a horse trade be a dendê trade be a ivory trade be a 1492
misdirection. be a wea-wea trapped in venetian murano be strung on deer tendon7.
gimme da loot. gimme da tax. break the pattern.
these lines never be direct.
flash the spirit. essas linhas nunca são retas8

#noAfricanafter5p.m.

“Vegan?! VEGAN?! I CALLED OUT SICK FOR YOU TO ANNOUNCE YOU DONT
LIKE BACONS NO MO?! ‪@Beyonce”
Tweet from @RoseMadness

kiwi bitch slaps w/ a pink dildo. Yaasss! treaties trans Wilma’s flint
Jacksonville quackery & Affleck’s omitted ancestral nut sacque. El Naranja Lump
like his lamb halal. won’t admit he fidgets w/ watermelon for stiff dumps.
me needs to get my Berber. flex like Slovenian olms documented. flaunt bent

Yoncé babel vowel. got my otay papers in pollen? Yaasss! hella young for kerplunk.
yella Curry dunkadunk. Catlin where you be? Dhabi got your Kashmir on lease.
memoir’s short due to glacier leaky. wheezy time suck be worldly? nay. sent
Syria and Tuvalu or Nuatambu. der were pearls before crude. gone . frack. sunk

back on sugar tit to coat lead. sentiments tweeted. televised absent ma’s liniment.
Boko Haram. who dat? cerise stagnant ikor down Grand Concourse. Chi-raq/ness.
breadfruit rotted. Pan of Africa now Beijing duck on defected hover boards.
Zika like Nestlé. wise monkey Detroit. Kiribati lagoon a minor viral crease.

but that dress! Suisse pleats, gold? benevolent blue ain’t confessing. adjourn lord.
IBS for Holtzclaw. mauled by a kudu. a daydream for Orwellian wackness.

1 wondrous function (Japanese)
2 tidal rainbow (Portuguese)
3 meant for fools (Portuguese)
4 the line is never direct. (Portuguese)
5 bat (Kaxinawá)
6 just the line (Portuguese)
7 butterfly (Kayapó)
8 these lines never be direct. (Portuguese)