film of a suicidal black girl, viewed in reverse

SaMya Overall

as of 2018, suicide became the second leading cause of death in Black children aged 10-14, and the third
leading cause of death in Black adolescents aged 15-19.

the blood droplets evaporate from the white cloth,
link arms and re-thicken like magma,
follow-the-leader into a cavern
at the base of her skull.
the bone re-finds its missing space,
melds into her cranium
her brain jolts awake.
the opaque sheet reveals a youthful face:
syrup cheeks and brown orbs
hidden by heavy eyelids.
her black tresses are a pillow
the strands unravel like a stretched rope.
she loses the warmth
of her mother’s hand from her cold cheek.
she chokes on stifling air
as it forces its way back through her lungs.
her body awakens,
pushes off the ground.
her legs follow, climbing
invisible steps up the bricked school
where her bullies erase their transgressions
and later mark tearful hearts on her grave
an invisible string flips her on her stomach.
her elbow grazes the rectangles of clay
the scarred skin zips shut,
darkens again.

SaMya Overall is a 4th year student studying English – Creative Writing at Michigan State University. She is currently the Editor-in-Chief at The State News and a managing editorial intern at Simon & Schuster, with experience at Macmillan and Feminist Press. This is her first published piece of creative work.

the EMT inhales his gasp,
opens his eyes from his wince
pulls his outreached arm back to his side;
He knows he cannot catch her.
her mother’s tears dissolve in her skin
the girl’s white converse kisses the ashen roof,
left then right.
she spins back toward her boyfriend,
his tear-filled eyes hold hers,
exhales a desperate whisper of her name
crawls back into his mouth,
his voice falls on deaf ears.
his outreached arm re-finds his side.
her waves gently. twice.
she inhales one last breath

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