poetry quarterly

10th anniversary


Grisella M. Martinez



Sunday morning near Seventh Street, NW.
He is risen; one foot atop a milk-crate
the other affixed to a cardboard box.
His hand slides across a fedora brim, the other
grooves into the air, with the synthesized bump
of his boombox, straddling concrete and rebar.
Next to his toothy companions, he flashes
gold caps to the cops, slow cruising north
to U Street and beyond. They wave past him.
The suits and hats assemble at First Rising
Mount Zion, brothers, sisters, matriarchs
in white. Double-rowed sedans lining the block.
He sways in his place, rooted to sidewalk
and sound, raising up both arms for a high-five.


Grisella M. Martinez lives in Washington, DC. She is the recipient of a poetry grant from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and has been published in The Baltimore Review, The Avatar Review, and Gargoyle. She was first-runner-up for the 2008 Maureen Egen Writers Exchange Award in Poetry sponsored by Poets & Writers. Her other passions include supporting the DC arts community, flamenco dance, and advocating for the value of immigrants and immigration in the national interest.


Published in Volume 11, Number 4, Fall 2010.


To read more by this author:
Grisella M. Martinez: Evolving City Issue