Out of Town


by LeConté Dill

For Oakland

Shellmounds buried between rubble
Fault lines split its Broad Way in two

Ports pulled men with drawls molasses-thick
Their well-heeled women crushed acorns underfoot

I’m sick to my stomach with the swine flu
Caught it from the boys in blue

You’re still a young man baby
Oo oo Don’t waste your time

White girl tripped over a speed bump
Fell smack-dab onto the black tar

There’s so much traffic up and down your Boulevard
Strolling down the Track, another day in the Life

Your Nation has been raided
Is there a there there?

About the Author:

LeConté Dill was born and raised in South Central Los Angeles and currently lives in Brooklyn. She earned degrees from Spelman College, UCLA, and the University of California, Berkeley. She has participated in the VONA/Voices Writing Workshops, as well as the Cave Canem workshops. LeConté’s work has been featured in the Berkeley Poetry ReviewCal Literature and Arts MagazineThe Feminist WireLos Angeles Magazine, and The Wide Shore. She coauthored, coedited, and copublished a poetry anthology with a group of teens from Oakland, California, entitled Y U Gotta Call It Ghetto? (2011). Currently, LeConté is an assistant professor at the SUNY Downstate School of Public Health, in Brooklyn.