haiku for impalas off the block

our days are inches
hand spun gold freed from the jaws
of civilized beasts

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seed on a windowsill

she will sit
in the eggshell white halo
of the morning
and find the number of scars on her
greater than her bills
but still

she’ll complain
about her middle
thinking her weight gain
is just the refrain of bad luck
found after good times at happy hours
but still

she will cover mirrors
with her mind and mourn her past frames
but i wish she knew
part of my resurrection
began when my mouth uttered her name with honey
but still

the love i have for her
waits on her windowsill.

tried by seven and a blue line

young man Kimani
tried by seven bullets
life choked short by that thin blue line
and muzzle flash
do archangels of justice
see your blood on the streets
this morning as they pass over?

Remsen Avenue
becomes the heart of Ramallah
barricades on Snyder
as East Flatbush becomes frozen
by cops and a mayor with ears deafened to all
but soda fizz
music for the beasts who occupy blocks

tried by seven
Kimani Gray, murdered he was
on streets Giuliani once called home
and the people rise and shout
knowing that the struggle made real
is bigger than TV sets and news desks
and that the heat always melts oppressive frost

after all,
the archangels of justice see the lamb’s blood
and will pass over East Flatbush
the fire in their pots reserved for pigs.

reclaiming expression(or, how i regained strength to cross-post.)

this past week, i was in an emotional dust-up with
myself. and it got settled the best way possible.
more on that later. i was feeling that way because,
i hit a spot where i doubted the effect of my writing
voice. i re-post from time to time on Facebook and
Twitter from here. there’s some responses, and i
know people read my work here. but i started to get
caught up on not seeing visible responses. and i
asked myself, ‘am i reaching people?’ because as
much as i dig that some people read and enjoy my
work, there is a trap that lies in sharing on social
media. there’s a fine balance to it. a line that is
like that dividing line in the middle of any road you
drive down. i started to ask myself if i needed to
start tagging people on FB like others have done
just to get people to notice their stuff, and that
idea got tossed out the moment i thought of it.

i’ve realized a long time ago, that i am expressive.
that while i don’t always i speak loud, i roar and
holler with my shit on the page. i slap the plaque
off of hearts and rub all of the grime from third
eyes with what i write. over and over and over again.
because, i write how i live. i used to be reserved,
to the point of being timid sometimes. and leaving
that behind has enriched my life and my craft so
much. and in the process, i realize that there is
appreciation, spoken and unspoken. and the unspoken
can be for a bunch of different reasons. i wondered
if i should stop sharing my writing aloud on Facebook.
i didn’t pose that question out of hurt pride, or
feeling slighted. i truly wondered if it was a bit
much. the response i got, and the resulting discussion
i had was rejuvenating. and then, to top it off, a
dear friend of mine asked me to write a haiku for
her that she will then proceed to have tattooed on
her. to have your words affect somebody so much that
they would honor you that way…the only way to
truly depict how i felt is to think about how it feels
to raise your head out of cool ocean water sharply
while at the beach and feel the sun on your brow.

so yes, i’m expressive. my words are me, and vice
versa. and though i may have these moments again, i’m
letting my voice ring out. because there those that
listen, even in a whirlwind of memes, status updates
and other stuff. to those that do, i thank you truly
for showing me that love, even in silence.

until the next time, walk good.

her eyes by horace harding parkway

(for leticia baez)

few things last longer
than kisses
that never happened anywhere else
but in dreams.
tinged with sugar from sourpowers
and heavy on the heart
like Jansports filled with love songs
on tapes emblazoned with your name.

i should have
sipped slowly from the shining midnight well
your eyes were when you noticed me.
then maybe i wouldn’t be
such a seasoned drunk
with a taste fleeting
like cars along the parkway
where you carved your name into me.

small talk on silencers.

no, i’m not talking about THOSE silencers, you haven’t
stumbled onto a blog post about a ‘Guns & Ammo’ magazine
article. when i say ‘silencers’, i’m speaking to those
moments one needs to illustrate certain things to people
who don’t understand where you’re coming from, be it in
an innocent way or deliberate.

sometimes silence is the best answer you have. as much
as i am an advocate for telling people how you feel,
showin’ and provin’, being upfront…sometimes silence
is the only recourse you have. because it allows you to
go calm about the situation, allows you to begin the work
of letting go of that anger. the moment you go silent
allows you to move that person bringing you frustration
completely out of your cipher so you can get rational
about things. and before you flip the hell out. as time
marches on i have come to embrace the idea of ‘silencers’,
key moments where you can say, ‘okay, nothing is getting
accomplished here. let’s regroup later.’ truthfully, i
have always tried to keep my cool. sometimes to my own
detriment, because there are those who see that as a
sign to steal on you. then i would have to pointedly
remind them that’s not the case. having ‘silencer’
moments every so often helps you bolster your intent if
it’s positive, and allows you to see others’ intent as
well.

and like i said at the outset, ‘silencers’ can be those
moments where the other person or people see exactly
where you stand. there’s many who just don’t like quiet.
they can’t stand the silence AT ALL. not even in their
own space. so they seek distraction, any type sometimes
if they don’t want to do the work on themselves. and best
believe, they will fight you tooth and friggin’ nail to
deny it sometimes. when you go silent, even for a little
bit, watch the change. they may have felt as if you’d
still cater to their nonsense. they may have acted as if
they could pop in and out without a thought to how you
felt. silence makes you LISTEN. and that’s something we
all need to do to LIVE. for an example, remember how you
did something so crazy when you were younger, that your
parents wouldn’t even speak to you? and you knew that
there would be hell to pay? exactly. ‘silencers’ are the
moments you should utilize sometimes to douse the flames
rather than having roundabout speech fan them.

as always, thanks for reading! until the next time!