Before I Forget

I wonder how petty politics will get this year?
As if there’s never room at the bottom of the pit
some of our leaders come from. I keep getting
that old man feel that I’ve seen this before,
over and over again like a bad movie I can’t
stop watching because there’s blood and sex
in it, a face of fear that somehow reminds me of
the beast I had to be to survive to this age.

Does my smile fool you when I say hello
with the “I fucking dare you” glare in my eyes?
That’s the Philly boy in me, the one who took two
city buses to school, only going backward
to catch an Express, avoiding those neighborhoods
that sometimes randomly act like why your ‘decent’
aunts warned you to stay away. Wasn’t that the adventure
you craved? Right there on those forbidden streets…

I talk to anyone. Shit, I’ve been in the same room with
Presidents and I’m supposed to be in awe of you? Why?
I’m looking for that something that only you can teach me,
it will amaze me, because everyone knows something
I don’t. I have your payment for your knowledge: my attention,
my questions, my open heart, and my love. Isn’t that more than enough?
Isn’t that what you are looking for?

I want to tell you this before I forget.
That love is indeed greater than fear.
That the places they told you never to go to contain
treasure and golden souls and diamond minds that
hold your answers. And one of those places, maybe more
if you keep looking, holds your soul mates, your spirit
family. Look around. Go adventure with your daring mates,
come back decorated with the awards and medals they give for
courage and loving entirely too foolishly.


April’s Dream/Reality

We marched off to claim our rights
under the orange glow of burning crosses
and fell under batons and hatred,
bloodied and tired of the spit and venom
and only rose to our knees,
for a better land,
still heads taller than the red faced
men calling us commies and niggers
telling us to crawl back into the hell from
which we came…

Where did we come from?

A land of lies and nightmares
an aspirational illusion saluting
a dream weaved into stars and stripes
where you killed our heroes
Shit, if you wanna fight the power don’t have a first
name that starts with ”M” I guess

Some dream, huh?

What? Was I supposed to just wake up
and say, “Okay, you elected a darky for president
and it’s all better now cause klan ain’t lynching us these days,


Been woke since Emmett Till in ’55
Big sleep will be the only thing stopping
me from calling out America’s bullshit.
You can kill one dreamer, but there are
entirely too many of us left. And we still believe it can be so much