A Literary Journal

Scarlet is a bimonthly blog dedicated to publishing the work of artists whose pieces give voice to the complexities of our multiple identities. In keeping with JIP’s mission to uplift marginalized voices, Scarlet aims to showcase bold and unique framings of the view from the margins, giving strong preference to writing that questions norms and provokes discourse.

The Pripyat Marshes

Some marsh plants have hollow stems, could be used as straws. The villagers would have known this, he says, could have taken a few on the march to the marshes, or better yet, pulled the pith from a young twig to make it hollow.

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The Knife

The Johnsons had no pretensions that they from were a class down from even my working-class family, which was not saying much where we came from, except that, behind their backs, everybody called them ‘white trash’.

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Frescoes Unadorned

That I woke up at all was not my intention. I’d reasoned with myself in a depressed state that I had had enough life lessons and experiences that qualified me to take a short-cut to the great beyond.

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Chukwu mo! Your air is the whitest version of white. Your voice is the softest version of soft. Your face no mortal or immortal has seen. Chukwu, I speak in my name and those of these two other Chi. We are back from our earthly sojourn with the souls you placed in our care.

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Plastic Dragon

When I birthed my second daughter, the doctors insisted I push instead of jumping straight to a C-section as we had done seven years ago with the first.

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Dame Edna

“You didn’t wash your car,” she declares as I pull up to the curb where she is waiting, tapping her cane.

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After the Bars Let Out

The streets were barren at 3:00 a.m. Up and down the main drag, the bars had all let out. She meandered in a sleepy stupor, bags beneath her eyes slipping off her cheeks. One could say she presented drunkenness.

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Black As…

Dad is black
Black as tar
And then some more
He’s not a slave
But who can tell for sure
Cause he’s black
Sometimes blacker
Than a moonless night

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“That’s seven. And eight,” I said. “Two in a row!” “The next stop is a few miles,” my father said. I was no longer a child, but I felt like one on that drive.

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