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Hip Hop Cricket

by Rita Dove
Illustration by Lyssa Park

Hip Hop Cricket

Rita Dove
24 Snaps
This ’hood’s vast
and I’m its chief
sentinel, a natural 
born horn. 
I’m a clarion 
nation, the itch 
in heaven’s 
evening clothes. 


Where I’m from
ain’t no “my bad”—


I am bad: That’s
truth. So pony 
up, falsettoed 
crotch-grabbers, you
whistling wannabes, 
and listen to 
what’s real: I don’t 
have to touch it 


to know that it’s there.
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