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          with language borrowed from Urban Dictionary

the movie must taste like poverty – a fractured reality I can splinter into – a textured absence or, the pursuit of wholeness – high-rises & turntables, a scratched record; precedent for what comes later – in praise of how Black men breach subjectivity – Omar Epps enters the frame – two men are holding each other & there is blood, a still-warm opening – Ernest Dickerson’s Juice (1992) – sepia lights, something soft enough to fall through – a reclamation of vulnerability – two men should be holding each other & there should be blood & it does not matter if there is eye contact – it does not matter how they are opened, how they are rummaged through – Barry Jenkins’s Moonlight (2017) – Kevin cradling Chiron’s skull, & there is only water; the audience sighs – skin must meet for there to be meaning – before touch, there are hands & feet, heads & pavement – there is always a party in the street – a raucous spilling out – the stage always set for a long summer; a deep drawl of a season, almost a low growl – Cadillacs shine like shot silk under sunlight – the blood can happen off-screen, too – Menace II Society (1993) – flat-tops & bicycles & everything else glued to this ecstatic backdrop – who’s to say if this is where life opens for us? – Omar Epps is in the frame again – niggas running through the streets, smiles cracked open, freedom pressed up against their spine – John Singleton’s Boyz n the Hood (1991) – in praise of being young & Black & owned by nothing I can see – in praise of the ways we have not asked to be watched – John Singleton’s Baby Boy (2001) – more often than not, the synopsis is: Jody’s jawline, Jody’s fists, Jody’s gun, all the hard parts – of course, there is tenderness, the soft underbelly, before – these are the stories of our lives.