Origin Song by Brian Francis


Boy, you can really chat
some fuckery
    Daddy told me

early & he didn’t tell no lie
imagine his surprise

when I told him he got it right
on his sixth try here I am

with my father’s face     worn
well enough     I guess     skinny

as a whistle & jumbee ugly
on the inside     vexed

left hungry & too lazy
to calm the growl

let me be ravaged
blood     never trusted

Vaudevillain, Chitlin’ Circuit
or Cypherin’ with the gods

I was one hit away

When Needle meets Wax     relentless
with our holy smoke     lit tip

ode     to the work wind does
one good gust got me gone

& right back     still left leaning




Brian Francis is a Cave Canem fellow from New York City. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in Creative Nonfiction and has an MFA in Poetry from NYU.