Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
  Jun 2018 John-Chris Ward
I am alive by luck at this point.
I wonder if the gun that will eventually take me has been made.
Whose trigger will bury me.
How many bullets, like a flock of sparrows, will come carry my life to its final bed.
Today, I am alive but there is no law to thank.
If not me, then someone else.
Born into a game of chance we never asked for. Traded diplomas for obituaries. Traded graduation speeches for eulogies. Traded futures for an early grave. Forced to cash in their chips. We don’t want to play anymore.
And this too is eulogy. And this too is prayer. And this too can resurrect the coffin wood back to a tree. Can sing back alive whatever parts of you died with them. Whatever leapt in your throat at yet another headline.
Mourning until you, too, are a thing to mourn.
But we will no longer be martyrs.
We are the rude awakening to politicians who pawned out our safety, who bartered our lives for bribes.
You say “gun reform is not the answer” but all I can see is a bullet rattling like a pinball in an innocent student’s jaw.
You smell like gun smoke and
I can see the AR15 you're holding behind your back and
I guess it's easy to crack jokes about dodging bullets when you're the one firing them.
Give teachers books not bullets:
Kafka isn’t kevlar.
Bronte isn’t bulletproof.
And how sick is it that we must add school shootings to your list of proud american traditions.
Throwing opinions like punches.
How many more have to die before you decide your ego isn’t as important as you think it is?
And I, too, am buried alive
My soggy grave parting its greedy lips.
To you, my bones, when ground into gunpowder and mixed into water, taste like champagne.
My pulse, as thin as an obituary panting beneath sweaty palms, and sure
We are “just kids,”
But you are forgetting we are the next generation
And you autopsy your fists.
Call it reclamatory.
Lately, when asked “how are you?” I respond with a name no longer living.
And who knows if mine will be next
Performed this yesterday in my first poetry slam and won second place :)
John-Chris Ward Jun 2018
I am the finest court jester there ever was.
I've juggled struggle after struggle without losing grip.
With a smirk cross my lips
I managed to make the crowd laugh loud when I told them too.
Who a better magician than me?
I made life underneath the lemon tree.
I've got recipes up my sleeve.
Who a better musician than me?
I weave midnight cries into melodic lines
You love to hear me sing.
I made a circus out of my misery,
The greatest show you'll ever see.
I don't need you to come see me.
I can be the perfomer and sit in the front row seats.
"Can't" is a noun, not a verb so throw it away. No one can take your dreams, unless you give it away. Dreams are expensive don't sell yourself short.

Btw it's nice to be back again. I've missed you, HP.
John-Chris Ward Jun 2017
Intimate kisses.
Breathless moments
That left me speechless.
Kisses on the wind,
Before I could even close my eyes and purse my lips...
I had missed it.
If only our moment was longer.
If only I knew what I know now, then...
I would've tried harder to kiss the wind.
I shed a tear, I shed a few;
With all my know it all I was still a fool.
Countless kisses on my cheek,
But the last kiss I wished I hadn't missed.
I shed a tear, I shed a few,
But my share of tears are through.
I choose not to be upset about the time that I didn't get,
the time I did get was a gift.
On June 8th my Great Grandmother passed away. I wasn't prepared then to speak on it, and in a conversational sense I still don't think I am, but through poetry I found the words my mouth wasn't yet capable of speaking. This is the beginning of my copping with her passing. Her impact in my life and family is immeasurably and her presence will forever be felt. The queen has arrived. Rest in Peace Lilly Mae
Be sure to give your flowers on this side of the grave,  because every moment is truly precious.
The Agèd Hands of Time have reached yet another
Toll of the bell.

12 years have passed since I’ve last seen her in this life. Distance and sickness in our being had robbed us both of Streams of time which passed like a long cold winter into
Her death. These lost memories often create overexposed
And superimposed photo negatives of imaginary frames
Of time I desperately imprint to hold tightly in my heart
And mind.

But I still hold tightly in memory to her soft voice on the
Phone and pictures of split second frames of physical time     My sister would send me. Many people don’t even have

In this life she loved to mother her three grown children
And flower garden as near as she could to the end. It was
In her nature to nurture her resilient perennial children
And help make the move easier for her annual foster  
Children from a confined existence to a deep soft warm
Bed of comfort.

Stamped on my mind is not the faded and worn
Bruised and torn image of her outward shell in the
Trauma Center at age 88
But the indelible inner and outward image at age 38 --
A lovely young mama who tucked her little boy in bed
Every night with a song and a prayer --
The little boy that is still alive in this man.

The Agèd Hands of Time have reached yet another
Toll of the bell.

--Daniel Irwin Tucker
My poem, The Agèd Hands of Time, posted two days ago, works in concert with this poem which I wrote one year ago today.
  Jun 2017 John-Chris Ward
Your writing voice is the deepest possible reflection of who you are. The job of your voice is not to ****** or flatter or make well-shaped sentences. In your voice, your readers should be able to hear the contents of your mind, your heart, your soul.
Next page