Rhys Langston – Megabytes Per Second Cousin Lyrics

“you soon will be a goddamn man
Now start learning what life is about now son”

“get smacked ’cause you’re blue Black
Throwback to welts and twist naps
‘n[]gg[],’ you
Ain’t allowed to say that
Light-skinned with choice
To format

“dark-skinned
But, yeah, momma passed
Crossed the Ward
Swept faberge glass

“born in that white hospital
But they transferred her and I
In the moment when crowned
My Black ass”

Called my grandfather
For connections
Megabytes per second cousin

I
Dialed tone
When I breathed in
And felt my own baggage rushing

I
Hung up and slumped over that chair
Staring at that gradient
Between forearm and the thigh meat
The pale yellow dimmed radiance

As if
Time was the only gulf between us
Continuity and through-line sequence
Medley, bevy of poly-genes
Silk-printed just to rerun

Mitochondria, yeah, fitted and colloquial
Some preshrunk embodiment
And all the credentials for a tailor
Fitting qualified postmodernists

“get smacked ’cause you’re blue Black
Throwback to welts and twist naps
‘n[]gg[],’ you
Ain’t allowed to say that
Light-skinned with choice
To format

“dark-skinned
But, yeah, momma passed
Crossed the Ward
Swept faberge glass

“born in that white hospital
But they transferred her and I
In the moment when crowned
My Black ass”

Write my own way out of a
Brown paper bag
Club, race as form
And content

Across a continent
Blood ties fists gripped
In blackened love

I
Remember those sunny afternoons out
Basking just to darken my skin
Comment section effigies of my peers
Scrolling minds in tandem

Metrics, lines
Self-spurred another scientist with
Google image case study basis:
Inherent blackness, intrinsic research
A doubt of predetermined 31 flavors
(sample size per serving
Just a feast of the eyes
Intersections of what swatches

Seem to serve and surmise)

With some stubbornness as intuition
Or attrition
Attributed to affinity
For new scriptures
Sketched in books
And doodled verse reliefs
Black-marked whiteness

Prescription lobbying minds
To some greater prophetic margins

Two parallel lines
For an abstract
Starting

“get smacked ’cause you’re blue Black
Throwback to welts and twist naps
‘n[]gg[],’ you
Ain’t allowed to say that
Light-skinned with choice
To format

“dark-skinned
But, yeah, momma passed
Crossed the Ward
Swept faberge glass

“born in that white hospital
But they transferred her and I
In the moment when crowned
My Black ass”

“soft curls on my neck flap
Caress she’d tell me and scratch
‘yeah, boy you look like me
But only back there where them good genes at,’

“brother and sister took after
We shared features
But the pigment masked us”

“get smacked ’cause you’re blue Black
Throwback to welts and twist naps
‘n[]gg[],’ you
Ain’t allowed to say that
Light-skinned with choice
To format

“dark-skinned
But, yeah, momma passed
Crossed the Ward
Swept faberge glass

“born in that white hospital
But they transferred her and I
In the moment when crowned
My Black ass”

Crawfish étouffée in my census identification
Written on the back of an suv double-parked
A New Orleans gas station

Knee-length grass roots
With storm swept down
To the foundation
Charitable body’s

[Family] records
Given to the gulf as a donation

“word,”
Of mouth, I remarked
As the portraits I’d yet to see
They met a watery fate
Sweeping the bayou sweat from my
Sun-yellowed perplexing pate
I’d yet to contemplate

Where does this history start
(no, really)?

And if memory by its very nature
Is its own form of art

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