Albany Middle School Teaches a Lesson on Entrepreneurship

Our book-bags be a black market—
         meager juveniles brandishing singles
behind blacktop filled fingernails
         and back-pockets void of wallets.

By 9AM, I break even. Jamel pries
         open his second box of Starburst, while
Kumi brokers six bucks to a sixth grader
         for the lack of supply and huge demand.

Half past noon, our surge
         comes to a halt, and we gather behind
the B building to compare profits
         and crack jokes on Jamel’s short-shorts.

Tuesday through Thursday be the same saga.
         Transactions in the hallways. While Friday
be a sabbath, a space for us to take flight
         over the basketball courts with our Nikes.

On Sunday, Costco be a kingpin
         that knew we’d never miss a re-up unless
Ms. Peggy called our mothers in for a meeting
         to discuss the school’s drop in lunch sales.

Monday be a chalk talk, our first lesson on
         the ways our brown bodies aren’t allowed
to yield the same way other bodies are.
         Aren’t allowed to multiply the same.


Hailing from Oakland, Ca, Daniel B. Summerhill is an assistant professor of poetry/social action and composition studies at California State University Monterey Bay. He is the author of Divine, Devine, Devine (forthcoming), a semifinalist for the Charles B. Wheeler poetry prize. Summerhill holds an MFA in creative writing from pine manor college (Solstice). His work has appeared or is forthcoming in, Button, Blavity, CalifragileThe Lilly Review and elsewhere.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *