Write for Ferguson: Protest Poetry from Hawaiʻi Review

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Copyright © 2014 by the Student Media Board, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Cover Art © 2014 by Joy Enomoto www.hawaiireview.org www.bit.ly/submit2HR hawaiireview@gmail.com

A Note on This Collection: In moments of crisis, we turn to our communities with

the desire to express outrage, to find and share information and resources, and to hone the tools needed to move out of silence and immobility to points of connection, hope, and healing. This poetry collection is born out of that desire. We at Hawai‘i Review decided to publish the enclosed pieces, the majority of which originally appeared on the authors’ Facebook pages before we asked permission to publish them, in hopes of amplifying the poetry that is being written in response to the failure to indict Darren Wilson. While an ocean and half a continent separate us from the people of Ferguson, these poems underscore our connections and are written in solidarity with the struggle for justice. As we were adding new pieces to the November 30th version of this collection, news broke of the Grand Jury’s failure to indict Daniel Pantaleo. As we mourn the loss of Eric Garner, we seek to extend the conversation contained in these pages as we work in solidarity with meaningful movements for justice gaining momentum across the country. —Hawai‘i Review December 5, 2014

WRITE for FERGUSON Pr otest Poetr y fr om Hawai‘i Review Featuring: Katharine Beutner Craig Santos Perez Marie Alohalani Brown Tagi Qolouvaki Allison Adelle Hedge Coke No‘ukahau‘oli Revilla Joy Enomoto Susan M. Schultz Joseph Han Lyz Soto Akta Kaushal Julia Wieting Bryan Kamaoli Kuwada Rain Wright Rajiv Mohabir Aiko Yamashiro Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio

University of Hawai’i at Mānoa

Introduction: Protest Poetry Now

No charges for Darren Wilson. No justice for Michael Brown. Ferguson is on fire. HANDS UP DON’T SHOOT More than three months ago in Ferguson, Missouri, 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by Officer Darren Wilson. Michael Brown was an unarmed, black man walking in the middle of the street. Then shot. Dead. Yet as of last night, St. Louis County grand jury decides that Darren Wilson should be a free man. Where is justice? HANDS UP DON’T SHOOT

Then write. Make the language of this injustice raise awareness and produce justice. Write a poem. Write protest signs. Write a letter to Michael Brown’s family. Write a letter to a Ferguson newspaper. Write a recipe for peace. Write a question for our legal system. Write your name on a petition against police brutality. Write a tweet. Write a caption for a photo on Instagram that lets people know what justice should look like. Write a story about love. HANDS UP PROTEST Across the continental United States, communities are gathering in protest of the grand jury decision, offering their support for Michael Brown’s family and speaking out against police brutality and racial injustice. Here in Honolulu, Revolution Books has organized a march in Waikīkī that drew approximately 100 demonstrators. Another march is planned for this week. Bring your friends, tell your students, post it on Facebook, share the news. —No‘ukahau‘oli Revilla

Here in Hawai‘i we cannot help but think of 23-year-old Kollin Elderts, who was shot in the chest and killed by State Department Special Agent Christopher Deedy in 2011. While his first trial resulted in a deadlocked jury in 2013, Deedy was acquitted of murder in his second trial this past August. Where is justice?

Hawai‘i Review Poetry Editor

HANDS UP DON’T SHOOT If not in the actions of the law, then justice needs to be cultivated in our own hands. In Ferguson, public reaction has involved peaceful marches as well as burning buildings, lootings, masks, riot gear, tear gas, police cruisers on fire, flying bricks, and shattered windows. This poetry editor asks you to write. Write for Ferguson. Write for justice. Write for the knot in your stomach that tightens and feels poisoned when you lose a loved one to violence. Write for the men and women and children who deserve to walk down a street without getting shot. Without worrying about getting shot. Write for family. Write to bear witness. Pay attention to the language being used by journalists, President Obama, Michael Brown’s family, protestors, Wilson’s testimony, people you hear on the street. 1



Katharine Beutner For Mike Brown and Jacqueline Woodson

In May, months later, the same girl will write home to describe the flowers over-running the campus. The apple-blossoms, she says, have blown off the trees, but everywhere on campus bloom violets and white anemones, bright strawberry vines, yellow cinquefoil, and little blue flowers called innocents.

In the cold low-ceilinged basement room of the Special Collections of Mt. Holyoke College, in a scrapbook created by a college girl in the 1890s—a book fashioned from an old sheaf of fire insurance applications and forms for assessing worth—is a hand-colored invitation to a party, pink and green and black, shaped like a slice of watermelon. ’97–’98 Cake-walk on de ole plantation October 15, 1895 “All the darkies will be there” Elsewhere in the scrapbook the girl counted up, on the back of an envelope, the electoral votes that put McKinley in office. She included her official ballot from that election: printed on pink paper, labeled “FOR WOMEN, Precinct B, South Hadley, Tues, Nov 5 1895,” along with a “women suffrage” pamphlet. Between two earlier pages she flattened a tiny red leather doll boot with brass buttons, and a pattern for a minuscule paper drum. In an aqua-tinted photograph, the sole Japanese student in the class sits outdoors on Mountain Day and waves an American flag. Her hair is in a schoolmarmish bun and she wears round glasses. The white girl who made the book has captioned the photo: “Our little foreign classmate.” When you open the scrapbook the drum springs up from the page like a tab in a pop-up book. The boot remains pressed and twisted like a baby’s foot mummified in peat. Nearby there is a letter in a folder in which another white girl describes her performance at the cake-walk party to her father: I wish you could have seen me the other night. I fear you might have blushed for me. I surely could not blush for myself, for I was blacked ‘up to de limit’ and arrayed in all the gorgeousness I could command. . . . There is nothing that takes away one’s self-respect so much as blacking up, but I don’t believe it hurts one to act like a goose for one evening. She calls herself “morally heroic” for being bold enough to parade in blackface and writes of the “great satisfaction” of being chosen, with her cross-dressed girl partner, to compete for the cake at the party’s end. For her it is all play and no blood. She has never seen a bullet. At the end of the night she removes her “complexion” and her dance partner strips off the black man’s body, discards it, to assume white womanhood again. 3


I am not a poet


Marie Alohalani Brown

Allison Hedge Coke

I am not a poet Words fail me But my heart is eloquent When I cry When I hug you When I smile When I am awkward Because I do not know what to say Because I prefer silence Because I am wrapped up in My thoughts My feelings I live in a deep sea of emotions Sometimes I drown in them Sometimes they lift me up and I float My heart speaks for me My family and friends know my language

Milestones mark each B-flat Blue, each Boy shot supine, child posed prone, smoked in deep night, flattened cold in heated day, in grandmothers’ neighborhoods, on ways to school. They bend in small intervals, flattened by semiautomatic tone from uniformed Mixolydian modal pieces, those state keys we chant back to in Key of F this and all of that— Never letting F go flat, sharpening only its natural flail, wailing inside, bittering belt, belly seething, through grit swallow through media regurgitation news. These blues began before this door, each imperial washout blasting empirical citizenry through and through. That’s what they do. News, too. twelve shots, Twelve Bar, subdominant, dominant, blue note flattened third, chromatic and more chord changes, outside the key to color harmony, painted black, that’s a fact, improvise jazz persuasion, all of its blues, this, too. And the missive missed again Klan-planned and orchestrated, it’s that flack puppetry crass quo. We all know. Timed for breaks, for still, legal holiday street emptying, forgetting what led to them, too. This is for Mike Brown and for each boy our son, for each and every one we cradle when clutching our own grandchildren, holding them long as we can, with melodious lullabies—lulla-byes— Releasing solos in unison this time. It’s time. Key—

I admire my friends and acquaintances who are so gifted at transmitting their deep feelings and thoughts through poetic images they build with words. Me, I am wordy. Or, I am silent. Or I blurt. But I am always watching, always listening. Sometimes I despair because there is so much ugliness in this world. I worry about my children’s future. I worry about humanity’s future. I cling to moments of joy and hope, but to be honest, I don’t think we will last another fifty years. I hope I am wrong. Anyway, just know that I care about injustice. My hands are raised—don’t shoot.



Darren Wilson’s Full Testimony, Erased and Stretched (Further) Joseph Han

I have blood on hand. Blood on my hand. I can describe a demon, a cloud of dust. And there is a light. That light stopped. That was all done. I just know I shot it, tunnel vision opened seeing smoke coming, slowed down. I start backpedaling, I don’t recall him every time, looking straight through me. I wasn’t even there, even anything.

“I see them walking, the size, second one really big, never seen before. I was bright yellow, leaves taller up. My window, my mirror, almost to destination. Brown starting to come around, I said what’s wrong. Fuck what you have. It clicked for me: the Cigarillos, black shirt, the stealing never once stopped, never stayed in the middle of my radio, my call sign—send me another. I reverse, backed up past somewhat contained. Come here for a minute. He faces me and shuts my door. He was staring to overpower me. His head was higher, his hands are up. I don’t remember full-on, deflected

I’m backing up. I’m backpedaling right through me. His face, blank. Keep eyes on him. Someone else will be that way. I thought I missed that light, never again. He’s coming back with his right I was assigned to stealing, to kill. I had blood on my hand, we have always been taught about blood. You don’t want it on you. I had to wash my hands. I had blood on my hands, his fingerprints. If I put it in an envelope, it would have no other contact with anybody, preserved for the union, the Fraternal Order. Tell the media I don’t want to talk. I pointed to this side, blurry in waiting.”

a significant amount of contact. That was my face I tried to hold, his right to get out, to not be trapped. I felt like a five-year-old grasping when I can’t, really, trying to handle this part of his right, hands up, I wasn’t willing to sacrifice my right to defense. We are so close and confined. My gun, hard to describe. You are too much of a pussy. The way he grabbed it, do you have a picture? Those punches could be fatal. I would be Brown, this manner twisted—it ended up like this. Envisioning a bullet, that was the next step, the trigger just clicked. 7


Black Brown Blood

Dear Ferguson


Dear Ferguson,

Black Brown shadows, nasty edges of their eyes. I am here. I cower in the fringe, speak your biting tongue.

This won’t reach you, and we have never met But I apologize. for my rage for being 4,121 miles away for being safe at home, on my laptop

Akta Kaushal

Is skin the blazing frontier? Guiles of self-made masters— How could it be impulse six dissecting shots in a row?

Bryan Kamaoli Kuwada

An incomplete rage dis-connected un-moored un-abridged A rage in concert Faint notes echoing 4,121 miles away A rage unearned I have no-body there A rage watching You mourn screaming build pyres in the streets Knowing I have not done enough for the slain to rest Knowing I have not done enough for your dead

Black Brown blood, Surge from scripted bodies. Phantasmal blood, consumed, forgotten, smearing your mess. In despair, we set your cackling lips afire, we indict your scalping eyes. we mourn, nauseous, in fury.

We have suffered at their hands as well children Lost land to their guns, their laws, their paper love Love lost land children lost paper laws lost guns Fill that blank But we hurt you too



Abolitionist missionaries railed against slavery then taught us to call you “Nika.” The syllables are rounder now But the word still fits in our mouths Too many forget our history forgot our princes, called “niggers” on a train Our queen, turned away from a hotel for being too uppity, too dark, too black Too many turn away from the memory Want only to imitate power Want only to insist that we are not you

Until then, I can only offer my voice an attempt to hear an attempt to see an attempt to speak an attempt to complete rage with love, Bryan #blacklivesmatter

Your shackles still cut Rooted In our land Taken hostage Our genealogies of murder Denied Naked eyes See our connections We are clothed in civilizing education in sanitized ignorance in “You are violent and destructive” in “What, do I look black to you?” Naked, I see our connections I see each injustice scrawled upon stones tossed at our feet dragging us apart thrusting walls between us keeping us raging alone And incomplete So I apologize. My people have learned how to eat stones so maybe We can feast together One day 11


First Person

In this twisted lens, they say we are more likely to kill. Our skins sing murder ballads

Rajiv Mohabir

with insistent use of the first person.

Hear a white man, “Don’t use the ‘I’ in your poem, your ‘I’ doesn’t matter.”

Since the police’s six shots scream out, chant loudly; this anger will not vanish.

He’s made a monkey of you, chained you to his country, now your cage. How to get over

Instead, burn their empire of lies to the Bill of Rights, salted with the ash of blacks.

this bondage when the law smears brown and black bodies into the cement?

Chant louder the battle cry of “I.”

His gaze erases you with everyday supremacy, the kind where black children are wads of gum police leave to darken the sidewalk. His gaze erases you with everyday supremacy, the kind that’s so deep you no longer see it— like that mole on your cheek, a death mark everyone mistakes for your blood, the one the law declares the mark of Cain: deadly force is the only that will contain you.



Warm Welcoming Fire Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio

remember the young men / vanishing remember America’s promise kept secret from their opened / disappearing hands

I cannot write another name / the once living body, sunken I cannot stand the weight, another brown boy is hanging / I cannot breathe this generation’s inheritance the choking stench of violence persists this accumulated death of the innocent so instead I watch as we take up the pens and signs throw our hands up the voices and prayer up we open our palms crying please

count the times we have witnessed the master’s call for massacre held our young and brown closer shielding our children from this wildfire of cold slaughter turned acquittal

Today we light this foundation that allows for the protection of the killing and the dishonor of the dying we burn with the skin and bones of our children black dead but not forgotten begging //

don’t shoot

what will change this country if not a young man shot porous his open palms’ broken promise his burial’s warm welcoming fire

// count the syllables and cities who home the buried who mourn the dead and dying whose breath is held still waiting for Justice



from understory (kai at 4 months) #poemsup #blacklivesmatter Craig Santos Perez

gas and blood? provide shelter from snipers? unarm occupying armies? #freepalestine nālani sings to kai

kai cries from teething—

a lullaby about the

how do new parents

Hawaiian alphabet— what dreams

comfort a child in

will echo inside detention

pain, bullied in school,

centers and cross teething

shot by a drunk

borders to soothe the

APEC agent? #justicefor-

thousands of children atop

kollinelderts nālani gently

la bestia? #unaccompanied

massages kai’s gums with

nālani rubs kai’s back

her fingers— how do

warm with coconut oil—

we wipe away tear17


Black Love

how do we hold

Tagi Qolouvaki

violence at arm’s length when raising [our] hands

dreaming black love dreaming all hearts, mouths, hands black love full dreaming black love baobab-mangrove-koa-sequoia-banyan-oak-tree roots crumbling the hard ground of our histories dreaming black love making fertile the earth, trauma of our bodies for mango, coconut, papaya, guava in all of our seasons dreaming black love dreaming black love dreaming black love

up is no longer a universal sign of surrender? #ferguson— kai finally falls asleep in nālani’s cradling arms, skin to skin against the news— when do we tell her there’s no safe place?



poems in chalk No‘ukahau‘oli Revilla

man hovers over me he is STOP in chalk

In response to the St. Louis grand jury decision to not indict Darren Wilson for the murder of 18-year-old Michael Brown, people gathered at the Honolulu Zoo on November 25, 2014 to protest. The peaceful march moved from the zoo down Kalākaua Avenue to the Royal Hawaiian Hotel. Midway through the march, protestors stopped at the police sub-station to chalk outlines of bodies on the sidewalk. Next to the first outline, I took a piece of chalk and wrote: “Here lies the body of an UNARMED man.” This was the first of many smugglings I did in Waikīkī that night. Poems in chalk.

the father grandfather husband son to the women he shepherds in Waikīkī. killing our men over me smiles, brings his fingers father grandfather husband son to his lips.



Define #Ferguson Susan M. Schultz What if Michael Brown was your son? public bench in front of ice cream store people eating ice cream in front of more people marching for fire.

black lives

Define “clean conscience.” Define “conscience.” Define “do your job right.” Define “your job.” Define “survival.” Define “normal life.” Define “haunting.” Define “hungry ghost.” Define “suffering.” Define “something that happened.” Define “Hulk Hogan.” Define “5-year old.” Define “powerful.” Define “jerk” (as in body hit by bullet). Define “jerk” (as in not). Define “fear.” Define “looking straight through me.” Define “as if I wasn’t there.” Define “bruise.” Define “fatal punch.” Define “10 shots.” Define “the demeanor on his face went blank.” Define sociopath. Try to define pathos. Try sorrow. Try justice.

in front of the Moana

matter curbside black lives

where people park their cars


get their luggage

black lives

carried away


to their oceanfront room

black lives


matter of the state

Sinavaiana wants chalk, too. This is our first march together. Not the last. For her, my chalk. Waikīkī, my poems. Michael Brown, my hope.



Define “breath”

This could be a poem: because global systems of racism made Ferguson possible

Susan M. Schultz

Lyz Soto Define “reasonable cause.” Take a breath. Define “miscarriage of justice.” Your mind will wander, and that’s OK. Define “compression of neck, compression of chest and prone positioning.” It’s a gentle thing, the breath. Define “chokehold.” You pay attention to the quality of the breath, and your body as your chest rises and falls. Define “captured on video” and “his voice muffled in the pavement.” You return to the breath, and the anxieties are forgotten for a second as you see the breath. Define “arms up in the air.” Define “just leave me alone.” You go back to the breath, and notice the body, and your surroundings, all perfect in this moment. Define “the police is our problem.” The self and its fears and desires and anxieties and urges return, then you go back to the breath and they’re gone. Define “feeling very bad.” Like the ebb and flow of tides, the self and the moment surge back and forth, with you caught up in the waves between them. Define “the time for remorse was.” You stay with the breath for a moment, and for that moment . . . you are no longer there. Define “in mortal danger.” Define “please don’t touch me.” There’s just the breath, the body, and all that’s around you. from CNN, NYTimes, and Zen Habits (How to Breathe)

This could be a poem outlined in chalk. A body swelling with historical facts. A sentence fraught with structure. This stanza too self-conscious. Wants to be volumes. Desires to be filled with topics. But fingers are too covered in dust. Too hobbled to sweep clean. Too many paralytic knuckles. Too many shattered joints. These could be evidence. This page blood stippled in patterns a thousand years old. Those cartographic maps drawn by certainty—the world will kneel. Crusades and conquesting. Continents and islands will crawl on their own macerated bellies. This could be the world outlined in chalk. This could be August 9, 2014. This could be February 5, 2009. This could be January 1, 2009. This could be November 25, 2006. This could be September 4, 2005. This could be July 6, 2002. This could be February 4, 1999. This could be August 1997. This could be the whole month of August 1997. This could be March 3, 1991. This could be 1973. This could be 1969. This could be 1948. This could be 1923. This could be 1893. This could be 1840. This could be 1830. This could be 1787. This could be 1783. This could be a fraction of history outlined in chalk. This is a history drawn in three-fifths in one drop in blood quantums in maps in leagues in mandates in courtrooms in hands in lists. This could be the world drawn in a fist. A fist of names. Of dates. Do you know where you were when . . . ? Did these lives matter to you? Did you light a candle? Would you have signed a constitution defining humanity in fractions? Would you have leafed it in gold? Would you visit it in state? Would you make it a bible? Do you see the world better divided in parts? Is your side greener? Do you strip yourself to bone? Do you ask your neighbors to be nothing more than femurs? Have you drunk all your rivers? Do you want to drink mine too? Too many names. Dates. This could be an outline in chalk. This could be a stanza of broken eyes and torn arteries. This could be a list. Chest. Arm. Wrist. Pulpy flesh. Skull. Cause. Of. Death. No line. No meter. No clause to make humans. Only outlines for their bodies. This could be a poem filled with nothing but chalk.



Quilt Pattern: Freedom code, apocryphal

Rope Hangs on the Neck of My Family


rope hangs on the neck of my family tree that grows in broken ground. red graffiti blooms on its skin, spray paint lines on planks made of its body— hands up don’t shoot—

Julia Wieting

The following subway stops will be under renovation until further notice. The scope of the project involves building above-ground terminals. Commuters should anticipate train delays and crowded carriages due to increased ridership. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this urban rehabilitation project. Please be advised that short term inconvenience will facilitate long term infrastructure. STOPS AFFECTED: The Duluth line: Clayton St., Jackson Ave., McGhie St. The Scottsboro line: Montgomery St., Norris Ave., Patterson Hwy., Powell St., Roberson St., Weems St., Williams St., Wright Heights, Wright Square The Neshoba line: Chaney St., Goodman St., Schwerner St. The Batesburg line: Woodward St. The Money line: Till St. The Liberty line: Lee St., Allen St. The Detroit line: Sweet Blvd. The Sanford line: Martin St. The Jackson line: Evers Ave., Brown St. The Birmingham line: Collins St., McNair St., Robertson St., Wesley St., Ware St. The Memphis line: King Pl. The Ferguson line: Brown St. The KC line: Green St. OTHER STOPS MAY BE AFFECTED DEPENDING ON EXTENT OF STRUCTURAL DAMAGE.

Rain Wright

the tree, its knots—deep-root stories grandmother tells of early uprising of mcconnell, belfast, antrim, ireland sick from ireland— ______mcconnell ejaculates on white thighs, crosses saltwater with blood, sings in american revolutionary tongue I remove the rope from the neck of my tree I cut out henson flesh, brothers who took up arms for independence I remove this blood, I remove this body, this skin— I remove maps of descent, the seven henson brothers will not fight in my blood, not for a country of bodied streets the daughters of the confederacy will not ask for widows’ pay in the headstones beneath the earth in my mouth. the wright,


the porter, the lewis, blanton, motlow, ables, holder, masters, poe, mcclellen, mcclean, maccarter, henson, the mcconnell


will rise across their burial past—

There Is Grief Aiko Yamashiro

they will with voices of silence listen they will with the list of the dead hear— songs of crying-out voices— they will in clouds of tear gas on Ferguson— approach the barricade—

There is grief in the guts of this house tonight, gutted grief leaving houses for streets leaving grief for gutting, tonight houses grieving in this gutless leaving.

they will take in their mouths the bones and feathers of the crows that kill children in streets they will raise hands up




Bios Katharine Beutner is an assistant professor of English at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, where she teaches creative writing and literature. Her novel Alcestis won the Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction in 2011. Marie Alohalani Brown is an accomplished Kanaka Maoli scholar, fiction writer, and photographer. With roots in Mākaha, O‘ahu and Ho‘okena, Hawai‘i, Alohalani is known for her expertise on Mo‘o Akua as well as her extensive knowledge of mo‘olelo collected in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Hawaiian language newspapers. Having earned a B.A. in Anthropology (UHM), a B.A. and an M.A. in Hawaiian language (UHM), and a Ph.D. from the UHM English Department, Alohalani currently shares her diverse talents as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Religion. Alohalani’s dissertation on John Papa ‘Ī‘ī is a stunning and compassionate work that testifies to the relevance and strength of Kanaka Maoli ways of knowing. Allison Adelle Hedge Coke’s authored books include Dog Road Woman and Off-Season City Pipe, poetry; Rock Ghost, Willow, Deer, a memoir; Blood Run, poetry/a verse-play; The Year of the Rat, poetry chapbook; and Streaming, a collection of poetry and also an album. Hedge Coke has edited eight additional collections, including Sing: Poetry of the Indigenous Americas, Effigies, and Effigies II. Her honors include an American Book Award, two endowed chairs, and several literary and arts grants. She is a poet, writer, performer, editor, and activist. She came of age cropping tobacco and working fields, waters, and working in factories. She is the fall 2014 Distinguished Writer in Residence in the English department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, where she continues to inspire students in her classrooms, workshops, and community settings. An incredibly talented visual artist, Joy Enomoto has produced gorgeous artwork that can be found on the covers of Hawai i Review’s Issue 79: Call & Response and Issue 80: Voyages. A queer Native Hawaiian, African American, Japanese, Scottish, Sikh, and Caddo Indian visual artist, she produces work that is concerned with the descendents of the plantation diaspora. We are so grateful that Joy provided us with the striking sketch for the cover of this collection. Joseph Han is a graduate student in English at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and current director of Mixing Innovative Arts, a vibrant reading series in Honolulu that 31

feeds us all so generously on a monthly basis. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in journals such as CURA: A Literary Magazine of Art & Action, Foliate Oak, Capitalism Nature Socialism, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, Eclectica Magazine, and Hawai‘i Pacific Review. Akta Kaushal is a passionate and fiercely intelligent PhD student in political science at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is also a poet who we are proud to annouce is being featured as Hawai i Review’s student of the month this December. Bryan Kamaoli Kuwada writes captivating short stories and poetry. He enjoys living in Pālolo in a house of talented people, including an amazing woman he loves and a slovenly old dog he loves significantly less. He has the most fierce, most loving, and most dedicated friends who always push him to do uncomfortable things, and his family and faculty have put up with his obsessive school-going for the last two decades. He is a PhD student in the English department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Winner of the 2014 Intro Prize in Poetry by Four Way Books for his manuscript entitled “The Taxidermist’s Cut” (spring 2016), Rajiv Mohabir has received fellowships from Voices of Our Nation’s Artist foundation, Kundiman, and the American Institute of Indian Studies language program. Winner of the Academy of American Poet’s Prize for the University of Hawai‘i, he received his MFA in poetry and translation from Queens College, CUNY, where he was editor in chief of the Ozone Park Literary Journal. Check out his website and more of his gorgeous poetry at www.rajivmohabir.com Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio is a kanaka maoli wahine poet / activist / scholar born and raised in Pālolo Valley (O‘ahu) to parents Jonathan and Mary Osorio. Jamaica is a three-time national poetry champion, poetry mentor, and a published author. She is a proud graduate of Kamehameha, Stanford (BA), and New York University (MA). We are so grateful that she has recently moved home to study Kanaka Maoli literature in the English Department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Craig Santos Perez is a native Chamoru from the Pacific Island of Guåhan (Guam). He is the co-founder of Ala Press, co-star of the poetry album Undercurrent (2011), and author of three collections of poetry: from unincorporated territory [hacha] (2008), from unincorporated territory [saina] (2010), and from unincorporated territory [guma’] (2014). He is an associate professor and the bold director of the creative writing program, which he continues to reenergize, in the English department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. 32

Tagi Qolouvaki is a talented poet who is Fijian-Tongan on her mother’s side and GermanEnglish on her dad’s side. She was born and raised in Fiji and identifies as queer, feminist, and as a lover of stories. She left Fiji for the United States half a lifetime ago and is currently a full-time Ph.D. student in Pacific literatures at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.

Aiko Yamashiro is a poet from the green valleys of Kāne‘ohe. Coeditor of Value of Hawai‘i 2: Ancestral Roots, Oceanic Visions, organizer, and activist, she is deeply committed to social change through healing past traumas and learning from our ancestors and our students. She is also a PhD student at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.

No‘ukahau‘oli Revilla is a stunning poet and Hawai‘i Review’s fierce poetry editor. From Maui, No‘u is pursuing her PhD in Pacific and queer literatures in the English department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. She is the author of Say Throne, a chapbook published by Tinfish in 2011. Susan M. Schultz has taught at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa since 1990. Her books of poetry and poetic prose include And Then Something Happened (Salt, 2004), Dementia Blog (Singing Horse Press, 2008), a book of life writing about her mother’s Alzheimer’s, which includes documentary techniques, Memory Cards: 2010-2011 Series (Singing Horse, 2011), and She’s Welcome to Her Disease (Singing Horse, 2013). She blogs at http:// tinfisheditor.blogspot.com and runs Tinfish Press, which publishes “experimental poetry from the Pacific region” and provides an important home for student and community writers. Lyz Soto is of Hakka, German, English, Tagalog, Ilocano, Spanish, French, Cherokee, Scottish, and Irish ancestory. A vibrant and award-winning poet born and raised in the islands of Hawai‘i, she is a teacher, a mother, and a bold co-founder of Pacific Tongues. Julia Wieting is from Chicago, which is also home to Emmett Till, one of the youngest martyrs of the Civil Rights era. Murdered at the age of 14 in 1955 in Money, MI, Emmett’s body was fished from the Tallahatchie River, weighted down by a 70-pound cotton gin fan affixed to his neck with barbed wire. Emmett’s mother, Mamie Till Bradley, insisted that her son be exhibited in an open casket at his funeral so that no witness could avoid the utter destruction of his body. Rain Wright is the author of A Way with Water, winner of the 2014 University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Biography Prize. Hawai‘i Review has the privilege of featuring two pieces of this stunning text in its forthcoming issue, Issue 81: Muliwai. Rain writes creative nonfiction, poetry, and fiction. She is from Hawai‘i island. Her work is heavily influenced by place, rhythm in language, and ideas of identity.



www.hawaiireview.org Hawai‘i Review Staff, 2013–2015 Anjoli Roy, Editor in Chief Kelsey Amos, Managing Editor Donovan Kūhiō Colleps, Design Editor No‘ukahau‘oli Revilla, Poetry Editor David Scrivner, Fiction Editor