been here, been on
3pc in my purse
resembling that remark
a shadow distorted by the dark
not sorry my persistence
in living is pissing you off
breathe easy youngling. we know you bury yourself in characters, trying to recreate your own story
a hero noir as dark as you
they don’t know the night you’ve faced at such an age.
the lil and lonely homey
hiding behind his mask while the city he loves screams and shoots and beats him down
the quiet one with crossed wires and bloody sneaks
nose deep in a book
when we all know dark side boys don’t read
they’re too black
to fantasize about anything other than their own dry ass reality
we see you future.
you are valid
where the wind tears through the thickest coats as we huddle in awkward clumps, side by side, for warmth. praying the show will start so we can go. peer into the horizon, gobbled up by the explosion of lights. sanctioned dynamite, the cold, and pretty dyes are all that separate us from a war zone in Aleppo.
where we gaze at the skies, waiting.
for them to come back. to reach down out of the full looming moon and grab your hand. and skoo dee whoop, scat, skip, and shimmy across constellations. to throw in a twirl or two so that your yellow dress whirls in the approaching star’s gleam.
where mouths stiffen instead of commence kissing
is there such thing as a new beginning? it is started by definition, therefore it was new. once lived, if uncaptured, its never reclaimed. remade. re-hymenated.
wherein that sliver of sour before one cries at another’s pain. before the shouting is deafening. before the thunder of fireworks bashing an eardrum. before we fade into the blankets of night, trying to regain life and limb in the warmth.
where the before exists
and hearts heal
and the broken
no longer congregate
she slang her dress over her knee
tucks her carefully pinned dupatta into her sweater
already damp and heavy
from leaning into the water all afternoon
squatting into scaly run off
legs and back bent like a frog’s
As the sun runs
from the docks
she scrapes peanut bunker into a bucket
from the tarp
spread across their commandeered
section of the pier
Warning the ladkis not to play
near the railings
she spies the looming quiet
amongst the overhead planes passing
the quarreling chess players
brightening bachata music
and distant rumbling of cars on the Belt Parkway
that surrounds her family
Serenity seeps into every fisher face
gazing into the bay
the darkness soon come
as they say
Time to get home for dinner
no stabbing demons
or slaying dragons for me
I didn’t save your legs from breaking
or solve the world’s aching
heroics aren’t really my thing
no mountain of lies did I chip away at
or speak great truths to be had
I lack luster and deservedness
less than special
but I did get through this day
Doggedly rode out the pain
in between bad caffeine shots
and propped eyelids and bandaged hearts
because the mission mandates
that I just
make it to tomorrow
why she whine down
break him beauty
create boundless space
so they ask how she move
how they float roun’
runnin’ with one body
flowin’ into each motion
as fast as rhythmically possible
It’s cold out as tourists snap pictures of the gaping hole in the center of the 9/11 Memorial site. People are unfazed by the rain as it mixes into the constantly churning waters. The sound of the giant, cubic waterfall drowns out the rest of the city in this congested part of lower Manhattan. In the distance, the museum gleams, packed with even more people.
Officers wielding large weapons appear every few minutes or so, scanning the area instead of taking it in. Some people march by, dressed in suits or business attire, barely glancing at the memorial as they file by in herds towards the rebuilt train station. Others stare down into the gushing rapids, or carefully run their hands over the hundreds of names engraved in the black stone surrounding the water. Everyone is trying to take the best picture to bring home in commemoration. They have to bend in awkward angles because the memorial sites for both buildings are vast in depth and size, and hard to fit into frame.
The blown out windows in all of the bordering buildings are all fixed. Dust in the streets has been replaced by sturdy, dark concrete that stretches in every direction. A new Starbucks is bustling, while the destroyed corner church’s construction is still underway. It’s walls will have vines, green patches, and an observation deck overlooking both of the tower memorials. In the background, the freedom tower is tall and brightly lit in the onslaught of night. The first few floors flicker on and off in a subtle pattern. From the plaza there is no bottom in sight to the waterfall. It seems to go on forever into the ground.
Even the commute in this neighborhood
is like riding with ghosts
I’m even starting to forget the face with the name