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Cracked


Cracked
*étude for a limited edition artist's book
Cracked by Suzanne Coley

Cracked from the strain of sleeping
With a junkie in tight shorts
Stripes down the sides

Cracked from the train ride
from Queensboro Plaza to E 59th street
“You don’t belong on the Eastside”

Cracked from the positive pregnancy
Test that puts life
Inside her at 22 weeks

Cracked from the strain of being 15
In two months with three
Years to go till graduation

Graffiti dreams scratched on invisible walls
Cracked paint holds her brain
Inside her head


Five in the morning she sneaks
Into the only bedroom in the apartment

One deep breath
Two swallows of hope
Six names squeezed onto tiny yellow parchment
Her government card,  she steals it.

Her mother’s cracked out body stirs
She stands still with the small paper to her chest
The other body in the bed peeks out
She stares back with defiance
Crack fiend turns over
She quickly leaves the apartment

What will become of her brothers
She writes on the wall with her blood

Don’t fall into the cracks

Queensbridge, NYC

Images and text by Suzanne Coley for limited edition artist's books about life growing up in New York City's Queensbridge.

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