• Homage to Lyle Ashton Harris

    Derrick Austin

    Winter 2024

     Untitled (Lyle and Robert, Bronx, New York, circa mid 1980’s)

    gelatin silver print image

    I never did tape the postcard of his print on my desk
    last winter in Madrid,
                                        Calle de la Ballesta, 28.
    Harris, a young artist then, dreams on Robert’s cheek
    in a pose so artificial my neck aches
    looking at trade’s lips parted with exhaustion or boredom.
                                                                            Dream without sirens
    during the fifth plague year. Dream beside an open window.
    All winter I rested so well.
    All winter I rested so well I couldn’t remember my dreams.

    My room was monastic beige with a rattling shower head.
    My room had a firm bed and a view of a congested street.
    Because my room was above the front door,
                                                                          closed only after sunset,
    the floor burned my feet with cold. I happily read monographs and zines.

    For three months I lived

    Derrick Austin is the author of Tenderness (BOA Editions 2021), winner of the 2020 Isabella Gardner Poetry Award, and Trouble the Water (BOA Editions 2016).

    Read More

    Web Design and Development by Riverworks Marketing