Blood, & Only The Blood | The New Engagement

Blood, & Only The Blood

By Enrique Garcia Naranjo
Blood, & Only The Blood, The New Engagement poetry

Yesterday, I mopped
the blood of a young
Black boy, whose head
was cracked open in
a basketball collision.

The mop was a brush,
a stroke of crimson
on the canvass of
the gym floor.

The strokes forming
letters of blood—
how fragile our bodies—
one impact & rivers spill
from our flesh.

I leave the floor spotless—
no trace of the young boy’s blood.

I imagine the mothers of slain
Black, Brown, Native

& how they clean the blood
from their neighborhood sidewalks.

I tremble.
How lucky I am
to have only cleaned
the blood & see the boy
return today—
bright, smiling
& alive.

How lucky I am
to clean up the blood
& only the blood.

Enrique García Naranjo is a poet, performer, and pocho from Tucson, Arizona. He is a Tucson Youth Poetry Slam alumnus and a Spoken Futures INC staff member. Having grown up in a working class, immigrant community, García Naranjo, through his poetry, explores Chicanx identity and the language of resistance. His involvement in the community of Tucson is deeply rooted; García Naranjo facilitates poetry and social justice workshops in underserved community spaces. In 2014, García Naranjo published his debut collection of poetry, “Tortoise Boy Says,” through Spoken Futures Press. In 2015, he was awarded the Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund grant for his activism and art in Tucson. García Naranjo’s work has been published by and included in The LA Times, The Acentos Review, Sunday Kinfolk, and more. Between reading, performing and teaching, García Naranjo can be found crate digging for vinyl and spinning at a block party. Follow his antics on twitter (@yungvat0).

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Contests & Prizes

Flash Fiction Contest
On May 1st, we announced the winners of our Flash Fiction Contest: Thomas Garcia (1st), Rick Krizman (2nd), and Rios de la Luz (3rd). Read more.

The James Baldwin Literature Prize
It is with great pleasure that we announce the winner of The James Baldwin Literature Prize of $1,000 to Hafsa Musa. Read more.

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