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by: casey mclerran

After our bath the boy would ask

when would he have black grass

like what I had on my me-me

“when you get big, like your daddy”,

I would tell him

The boy would get dressed and say,

“I am wearing my costume.

I am a man now.”

he proceeds to tell me he is going away

I am not invited

He has lots of work to do

and he needs me to drop him off in


Johnny and I

The boy drinks small glasses

of water or juice

always in a glass which he climbs to the highest

shelf to reach, if not provided

He calls it his yucky

his imaginary friends are all the

fair-weather friends we know

“I have a gig tonight”, the boy says

“is it far away”, I ask

“not too far”, he says, “I will be out late”

The boy sets up his toddler-sized microphone stand

he finds the perfect chair

one that allows his little feet to keep time

The boy finds his garage spot light

with the pink bulb he wanted for his birthday

and clips it as high as he can reach

Johnny Lee

“Thank You, Thank You!

My name is Johnny Lee McLerran”, says the boy

“I have been playing this song since before I was born”

Literary Editor
Casey McLerran is the Literary Editor at the Black Wall Street Times. She is a Sooner State transplant from Forest Hills, NY. McLerran arrived in Oklahoma at the age of three shortly after gentrification displaced her and her family out of their home in New York. At first glance, many think they have McLerran figured out. To be frank, she’s a biracial American young woman that unapologetically embraces her half-African identity — a feminist-womanist she is. Her pen operates as her voice as well as her sword. Her accolades include the 2018 Rural Oklahoma Poetry Museum’s Oklahoma Poem Award, a business management degree, and her three beautiful children. Her objective with the Black Wall Street Times is to elevate and amplify the literary art of modern black American culture, pay tribute to African-American literary trailblazers, all while simultaneously linking and introducing children to the world of colorful American writers.

The Black Wall Street Times is a news publication located in Tulsa, Okla. and Atlanta, Ga. At The BWSTimes, we focus on elevating the stories of our beloved Greenwood community, elevating the stories of...