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Saturday, September 02, 2023


by Danielle Cowan

Top 5 Stories on Brownstoner This Week: A Bed Stuy Church Faces Demo for Apartments

Yo, bro can I codeswitch
And just bitch bout the comparatively rich
Cuz I high-key think this piece in the Brownstoner utter bullshit
Tell me why it cost the community a whole ass church for a Bedstuy block of expensive ass apartments
Maybe these canceled fried fish feasts where coconut cake recipes written in cramped  handwriting come through as a gentler form of generational wealth
ain’t mine to count
But this bum ass journalist out here jacking the space’s
Jeopardized pre-Civil War story
Like she finna bless the block
With some of that good grant-funded participatory placemaking glory
Like a  revolting remix with  alternate universe anything NOT for the culture Kendrick
Her bars broken up by
Compelling add copy, counting clout as
Antique crown molding, and picture rails which I never peeped
And probably wouldn’t know how to work
Pulls me back to my own crib
with the claw-foot bathtub that could be beautiful
Them thick ass prewar walls whose spackles put sharp ends to 10 year old skipping and 20 something Pilates pumping
We got a goofy ass Zillow page gassing up original gas fixtures
They been tryna buy us out
For some bread we would’ve bled
In  two years of local living 
Wising up with Newly rent unstabilized doubt
Shit started around the same time
Someone sued cause they seen
That unnecessary ass door knocking for landlords
instead of Power tight knocking out kingpin antics
Got Breonna Taylor dead.
Rest in peace Breonna and come back bro
My bad if you thought it was all bad
See they built these breakfast bars in the apartments upstairs
and now they be going for 5000 a pop
So I swear it was a scene
straight up from one of them papers with positive statistics
Paying respect to that low-income colored social capital
Legacies of beastie bachelors degree and first car funds lack
Sis who stay
holding 5K for them rent checks
But can’t hold doors
Switched up damn quick 
When she needed the Super’s number

Danielle Cowan is an NYC born and based, blind, queer and Blackarican native New Yorker dabbling in organizing, poetry and performance. Her work is fascinated with what it means for bodies and places to hold multiple, sometimes culturally conflicting identities and playing with ways to write and perform within shared histories and trauma. She has had poems published in Causeway Lit’s revolution issue, Mobius: The Journal of Social Change, and elsewhere. She has read in The Rally Reading Series and received fellowships from More Art and Office Hours Poetry Workshop.