Throw The Rocks

By Mickayla Noel


1. The first time she met granddaddy,

his nose was broken

and the rocks were still cackling.


Why did he not cry

when you snapped it back into place?

why did he laugh when hearing the whistles of men with guns and hate filled eyes?

the rocks in the background whispering like sly devils for you to pick them up:

“throw us,   throw us!

soon winter will be coming,

throw us,   throw us!”

soon there would be no need to hide in open space”


“cause they done killed a lot of us,” she answered

stripped our skies of stars,

replaced them with wooden shacks

can you point me away from the Mississippi

to the lighthouse?

our backs are aching,

and maybe the sun will heal us,

or maybe the birds will sing songs we can almost taste on our tongues,

of a childhood long forgotten.


2. My great grandmother was a slave.


sitting by the firelight,

she told me riddles that had only ever been whispered,

“The rocks are yelling

about blood, tears, and sweat.

covered by pillowcases just because they smother nicely.”

and dear child

the rocks are vengeful objects,

sniffing like hounds on the hunt

let’s hope the salt has soaked,

they’re cackling like jackals,

hungry for the sun to say goodbye to the moon.


4. My ancestors have told me to always listen to the rocks,

they see more than the high eye,

and back then staying low was a privilege,

gettin’ over the river a must,

but grandmother, what about us?


she just sighed,


“throw us,  throw us!

soon winter will be coming,

throw us,  throw us!”

soon there would be no need to hide in open space.


Mickayla Noel is a junior creative writing major at Interlochen Arts Academy from Alexandria, Virginia. She is also the sound and visual content editor of the Interlochen Review. Her work has appeared in the Red Wheelbarrow and the Interlochen Review. She is a spoken word poet who has performed at venues such as The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and BusBoy and Poets. She plans on going into poetry and politics in her college years. She finds that Nutella, Netflix, loved ones, the Harry Potter series, and her favorite rapper J.Cole can get her through anything.