Transcript: Poems on Air, Episode 82 - Faylita Hicks

The following transcript is provided for accessibility only. Layout, formatting, and typography of poems may differ from the original text. We recommend referring to the original, published works when possible to experience the poems as intended by their authors.

[Music intro]

LYNNE THOMPSON: Hello! My name is Lynne Thompson, Poet Laureate for the City of Los Angeles, and I’m so happy to welcome listeners to this installment of Poems on Air, a podcast supported by the Los Angeles Public Library. Every week, I’ll present the work of poets I admire, poets who you should know, and poets who have made a substantial and inimitable contribution to the art and craft of poetry.

LYNNE THOMPSON: As a poetry lover, I’m forever catching up on the stacks of poetry books that beg to be read. It’s never too late to read or re-read a collection of good poems, and that was the case with Faylita Hick’s HoodWitch. Hicks, the recipient of multiple fellowships and residencies, obtained an MFA in Creative Writing from Sierra Nevada University and serves as the 2022 Writer-in-Residence for the Texas After Violence Project. In June 2021, the versatile Hicks became a voting member of the Recording Academy/Grammys as a spoken word artist.

LYNNE THOMPSON: "The Battered Woman’s Prayer for Power" by Faylita Hicks

"The Battered Woman’s Prayer for Power"

I have always know I was pivoted then crushed
against the fleshy shore of my own name. A breast

made of shrapnel moans. Consider the aggressive Yes
benign now in this body—a testament of my audacity

to exist at all. I have always known I was a wishing well
of a woman. A wailing wall of a woman. I am pound for pound

every bit an echo of the god I was before
I became what I am now. Now I am a critic

of the climate & the breaking of this body.
Here, do this in memory of me:  howl

when he knocks against your belly with his teeth,
when he threatens to carve you as anything less than glorious,

as anything other. Warn:
I will not go easy. There will be no victory here.

LYNNE THOMPSON: The Los Angeles Poet Laureate was created as a joint program between the City’s Department of Cultural Affairs and the Los Angeles Public Library and this podcast is available wherever you get your podcasts. Thanks for listening!

[Music outro]

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  • DISCLAIMER: This is NOT a certified or verbatim transcript, but rather represents only the context of the class or meeting, subject to the inherent limitations of real-time captioning. The primary focus of real-time captioning is general communication access and as such this document is not suitable, acceptable, nor is it intended for use in any type of legal proceeding. Transcript provided by the author.