Poem: ‘With Boxes Piled At the Foot Of the Stairs, I Go to See Logan’ by Hanif Abdurraqib

 In ALIVE, Poetry

I will not spoil
the ending, though

what is there to spoil
but to say there was

a casket in the place
you would imagine

a casket to be.
depending on how

you define burial,
the ending is unspectacular.

my pal died not when pill bottle
rolled hollow from his unfurling

palm. It was sometime after
that, when I told his old girlfriend

I have maybe been in love
with you the whole time.

Hanif Abdurraqib is a poet, essayist and cultural critic from Columbus, Ohio. He is the author of “The Crown Ain’t Worth Much” (Button Poetry/Exploding Pinecone Press, 2016), nominated for a Hurston-Wright Legacy Award, and “They Can’t Kill Us Until They Kill Us” (Two Dollar Radio, 2017), named a best book of 2017 by NPR, Pitchfork, Oprah Magazine, The Chicago Tribune, Slate, Esquire, GQ and Publisher’s Weekly. He is a Callaloo Creative Writing Fellow, a poetry editor at Muzzle Magazine and a member of the poetry collective Echo Hotel with poet/essayist Eve Ewing. Abdurraqib’s newest book is “Go Ahead In The Rain: Notes to a Tribe Called Quest” (University of Texas Press, February 2019). His forthcoming books include the new collection of poems “A Fortune For Your Disaster” (Tin House, 2019) and a history of black performance in the United States titled “They Don’t Dance No Mo’” (Random House, 2020).

Featured image courtesy of Attilio D’Agostino.

This story originally appeared in ALIVE Volume 18, Issue 1, available now online. You can order a print copy here or pick one up at these locations.

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