Tuesday, October 07, 2014
We Waxed, Berlin to Blunt
Guerilla action, painting tattoos on homeboy at 124th and Lex. Right by the corner homeless dried up like
you wouldn’t believe, branches for hair pounding dirt upon dirt. Meshed into concrete, push carts
stacked with wino junk. The lot of them wise cracking, jab jabbing at the mouth about God knows what.
But this is not your boy from Vermont homosexual thrown into the woods. This is not your sixteen year
old girl pregnant, beaten down by a boyfriend. Here, the wounded lasso virgins with minds of hate.
Street hustlers, ragamuffin. Diabetic black buffoons bloated. Shysters lounging on crates getting stoned
on someone else’s hash. Bombs go off in their minds. Hiroshima, mon amour. For some they served in
Vietnam, sitting in wheelchairs, dragging their legs. Hispanicas gather in prayer. Oh mourn another one
for succumbing to a bullet. A doorstep in the Bronx candles lit, well placed white and blue. Apocalypse
now. Papa Gatos and the drive by somewhere in Cali 1985. The stick up kids never died. Gentrification
made them mama’s boys. They found other ways to have fun.
Walking silhouettes, sleeping shadows without homes. On some days it rains, turns them into wet
rotweillers foaming at the mouth. Bugs, barbarians of these streets, above ground is the underground.
They have a common language onto their very own. Who takes turns on the woman among them? Is she
slut to the world or kept hidden lost among memories of mothers and fathers, a sisterhood of hookers
and panhandlers. Pack of wolves hungering, death before wealth. They sleep, carcasses on cardboards,
heating vents, alerted by sunshine, smell of McDonald’s French fries.
Whose religion is this? This is your New York Kamikaze. Hobos from men’s shelters suiciding at wee
hours of morning. Breaking bread with cigarette, penny for your thoughts while an art surgeon, needle
man draws blood. Make him feel as if he’s in a fight. Is it cobra on his back, names of people who got
sprayed? Make it colorful, fine, detailed and perfect. Shine, Hosanna boy, go get your Caesar cut, get
yourself a brand new face, from an O.G. to pimp, Daddy to uncle.
We waxed, Berlin to blunt. There’s no name for poverty. Accept the seeds in your pocket. Pennies lead
to dollars. How low can you go? Do you heckle them inside the jails or beat blood into them for being
trans and black. God lock up his sons. Put them in detention for the hurt they perpetrate. How could a
boy be man, hole up in a tank, getting squeezed by another man twice his size. He had mauled like a
tiger. He had raped like a baboon. Burn this into him. Two years without the light of day.
Would he come out a man or live to do it all over again. Wage waging the war. This is not a gun fight.
This is me putting you in your place. This is me telling you I’m ace. We come from beasts. But we come
from so much more. Why would you want to get caught up on Kierkegaard. You’re living it up, oh yeah.
Out on parole. Got a white CEO holed up in your room doing blow. Got jumped in Harlem for his wallet
and chains. You played good Samaritan. Brought him home for some white powder. The look in your
eyes. The sweat on your face. That sunshine of a smile. All that teeth and the air blowing out your nose.
Like a child you shake. When your parole officer come come a calling, you shake. Yes ‘um. I dun take my
medication. I been to my physician. I dun seen my psyche. Like a white boy on Daddy’s lap, you stand in
front of your female parole officer doing good. No tears in your eyes. Your heart beating faster than a
drummer on the platform of the uptown 6 train on 14th street.
Cause you know she’s packing a gun. She’s gonna weigh on you a ton. Them eyes are watching. From
the streets through to your lungs. Breathe the words of a warrior thief. Pick up on the fresh girls at Port
Authority. Bring ‘em into your world. Watch as they stress me. Listen as they talk honey into me. What is
It that these girls see in me. What is it that makes us blood. I’m not your brother. But here we are
fighting for our lives. Like the night to sand. Your skin a darker shade than mine.
We will learn in time where the sons of our fathers have come. That they were doctors and lawyers,
scientists and surgeons. We need not wait in line while we have our bodies checked for gold. That we
have bought and sold.
On the streets marching, swaying as the wind blows dirty weather. Together and alone, separate and
Surrendering, we own our sadness, the violence of our tears.