One day I slipped in the snowy gutter
of Brighton Beach
and the booted feet passing
me by on the curb squished my laundry
into the slush and I thought oh fuck it now
I'll never get my clean sheet and I cried
into the snow under my cheek in that gutter
in Brighton Beach
Brooklyn where I was living because it was
—Audre Lorde, "Cables to Rage or I've Been Talking on This Street Corner a Hell of a Long Time"
The great Audre Lorde didn't spend much time in Brooklyn, but the poem she wrote about her winter in Brighton Beach living with a racist "yente who sat all day long in our common kitchen / weeping because her children made her live with a schwartze" is one of the most unforgettable poems of our borough, featuring some of her most indelible lines:
I have been given other doses of truth—
that particular form of annihilation—
shot through by the cold eye of the way
things are baby
and left for dead on a hundred streets of
We celebrate Audre Lorde with #74 to commemorate her “Cables to Rage or I’ve Been Talking on This Street Corner a Hell of a Long Time,” one of the greatest poems of Brooklyn, published in her classic 1974 collection New York Head Shop and Museum.
Screen printed locally at Pete's Print Shop in Greenpoint on Alternative Apparel keeper vintage jersey tees for a luxurious softness. 50% cotton / 50% polyester. Bound collar and blind stitching on sleeves and bottom hem. Tear-away tag.