Friday, February 28, 2014

shaving over scars (the art of not falling backward)

shaving over scars (the art of not falling backward)

I'm tired of fighting
I'm tired of fighting
Fighting for a lost cause

the fingers of my left hand
trace the Braille of scars
across the back of my head

etched by all the times i have fallen
inspecting the hairless landscape
left from my shaving over scars

an act done blind in the shower
my head bowed slightly as if praying
and my eyes closed in concentration

i have committed more than most men
shaving my head and part of my face
(leaving a Van Dyke as decoration)

like a woman caving to convention
conforming to properly shorn peers
i shave my legs as well for cycling

who am i sculpting
who am i looking for

not me not me not me

there is always blood from these rituals
usually felt and then revealed on my finger

scarring the scars that tell the silent story
of a man shaving away himself searching

for someone else looking back at him in the mirror
who has perfected the art of not falling backward

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

glimpse you

glimpse you

High as the light of day
You're falling down across your lost highway…
Your eyes get stung by the rays of the sinking sun
“Heart Is a Drum,” Beck

the South will glimpse you spring
even summer

in the unfolding aperture of winter
promising warmer days

i pause walking across campus
turning my face to the sun

the warming rays denying the cool air
of midday in February

you are hundreds of miles away
i am no longer in your thoughts or heart

standing in the bright promise of longer daylight
i feel your hand slip into mine

these seasons of us shuttering my longings
like a dream or a photograph

the World will always glimpse me only you
winter spring summer fall

Thursday, February 20, 2014

misfire (trigger warning)

misfire (trigger warning)

Michael Dunn pulled the trigger

Jordan Davis just one in a car of four
playing music loud and black died

justified? we cried

the verdict lied! we cried

in a black and white video from 1963

Baldwin speaks with his hands and determination
a white wisp of cigarette smoke crossing his black face

"Well, I know this,
and anyone who has ever tried to live knows this:
what you say about somebody else,
anybody else,
reveals you." …

“We have invented the nigger.
I didn’t invent it.
White people invented it.” …

“But if I am not the nigger,
and if it’s true that your invention you drew,
then who is a nigger?
I am not the victim here.” …

“And I give you your problem back.
You’re the nigger baby.
It isn’t me.”

Dunn’s hand held a gun
aimed at a thug he invented

three fingers pointing back
a trigger warning
a misfire

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

criminal acts (black&white)

criminal acts (black&white)

for Jordan Davis, February 19, 2014

in a white rage & armed
he felt his life threatened

by their criminal acts
of simply being blacks

he shot into their fleeing car
to stop them in their tracks

later much later he wrote a letter
in black&white to tell the facts

what had he done within his rights
wielding a gun as a criminal axe?

was it a mistrial or miscarriage of justice
standing his ground between whites&blacks?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

you have asked me why i walk so fast

you have asked me why i walk so fast

You better save yourself
From something you can't see
Follow it where it goes
Follow it back to me
“Don’t Let It Go,” Beck, Morning Phase

you have asked me why i walk so fast

this is the story of the real me chasing always
the me i want to be for you

i know the real me there only a step or two behind
a shadow darker than a black hole

the real me cannot enjoy even a single moment
and has never known peace or quiet

but he believes those possibilities exist somewhere
so he too is relentless anxious and swift

you have known us both of course

the real me incessantly in manic pursuit
the frantic me trying to put on a happy face

in the end
you were better

than us both

cut to the quick
able to save yourself

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

do you

do you

And you will learn to survive me.
“Learning,” Perfume Genius

i am doing sixteen things
at once
as usual

most people would try
only three
but not me

but that’s not the problem

i cannot find the number
to help me forget
this one true

the only thing i ever want
to do
is you