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 Jan 2018 atlast
Frank DeRose
I saw god today.
Sitting in the alleyway,
Head hung low on the subway.

I saw him wordlessly crying,
As all the world went flying,
Dying by.

I saw him homeless and asking for change on 54th
I saw the streetlight illuminate his graying, ragged beard.

I heard his name yelled--
Out of fear.

I didn't see God
In the white picket fences,
In the pristine churches with cushioned benches.

I didn't see Him
At fish fries,
Or in ostentatious Osteen's obnoxious cries.

I saw god kneeling on the splintered pews;
I saw him fleeing with the Jews.

I saw him in the south,
With the poor,
Lying naked on the floor.

I saw god and didn't recognize him.

For he was kind
And accepting,
With eyes that saw,
But were blind.

I saw him wash the feet of sinners.
I saw him cry and pray at dinner.

I saw god today,
And we talked,
Embarking on a casual foray--

he asked me to tell him my misgivings,
And my doubts about faithful living.

I did.

"god, there is so much hypocrisy in this world,
And often, in your name it's unfurled.

You weigh down the oppressed,
And lift up the oppressor.

Christians shame their daughters for abortion,
They cry murderer and throw your words at her.
They do not help.
They do not heal.

Christians turn away those who would seek refuge.
They forget that you were Prince of an exiled people.

I am told that if I do not accept you,
I will go to Hell,
And you know this to be true.

Or worse,
A better man than me might go to Hell.
Because he calls you Allah,
Or Buddha,
And no matter the good he might do;

Still he is doomed."

god heard me,
And his tears fell--

he paused a moment,
And then responded,

"My child,
Can you not see?
Here I am before you,
And look how my 'disciples' turn away from me."

he said that word with bitterness and disdain,
I'd like to note.
It dripped off his tongue,
Even as blood fell from his wrists, legs, and side.

he carried on:

"Look how many are afraid of me,
How many reject me--
Because they don't want to see.

Look how many seek their own gain.
See how many look away from my pain.

Still, on Sunday
They'll come out and sing--
Cacophonous droning,
Wailing and moaning.

They do not worship me.

You see me here before you.
I am not their God.

Their God is one of self-advocacy,
Of Selfishness--
Of sublime, self-serving servitude.

I am Selflessness.
I am Poverty.
I am Outcast.
I am Brokenness.

I know your concerns.
I know you spend long nights questioning your faith.
Questioning others' faith.

Blesséd are you,
My son.

Blesséd are all my children,
Who seek to serve those who do not know my name.
They are my children still;
And still others of my followers have strayed farther for fame.
Blesséd are they, too,
That they might know me--
And you.

You come here and speak your truth,
And I thank you."

god stood up,
Humbly bowed his head,
Ever subservient,
And walked away.

I sat in silence,
Contemplating our verbal parlance.

Then I too stood up,
Walked away.

I saw him sitting outside,
In his hands,
An empty styrofoam cup.

I saw god today.

And as I walked away,
I saw one man stop, give him a couple quarters, and a nervous, friendly smile.

I saw another walk past, dressed in her Sunday best, averting her gaze, using her body to block her child's line of sight.

I saw god today.

Did you?
 Jan 2018 atlast
Frank DeRose
Good does not discriminate.
Be careful who you choose to hate
 Jan 2018 atlast
Frank DeRose
My father hurt me.
Not emotionally, or verbally, or physically.
But he did push me.

He ****** me forward and higher,
Steered me through brackets of thorny growing pains.

I bled and was scratched,
But am not scarred.

He has constantly molded and guided me,
His hands rough and calloused,
(From all those long years in the kitchen, making and earning bread),
But ever caring.

He gave me so many "father-son" talks,
And charitably called them "man-to-man."

He breathed me into existence,
And his imprint on my soul is indelible.

Though there are places where the treads are different,
And the paths diverge,
One always informs the other.

And while of course we sometimes disagree
On thoughts of who the other should be,

He has taught me what to be,
And I have learned also what not to be--
From him I have taken the best
And behind I have left what is left.

I am proud of who I am,
And as I put these thoughts into words,
I know fully that I am where I am

Not in spite of him--
But because of him.
 Jan 2018 atlast
Frank DeRose
"Isn't it incredible,"
She queried,
"There's an addicting collection of lifestyles before us...
And we can be any of them!"

"Marissa, you genius,"
Said I,
"You brilliant, amazing, genius!"
She had articulated perfectly the way I felt about the world in front of us.

There were the usual crowds--
The jocks,
The nerds,
The theatre kids,
The band geeks,
The stoners,
The gamers,
The popular chicks,
The emos,
Et cetera, et cetera.

All with their own quirks,
Their idiosyncrasies,
Their peccadilloes,
Warts and shines.

There were other kinds of crowds, too,

There was the girl with thin scars on her thin wrists,
A part of the lonely crowd that grappled with a common demon.

The boy who wore the same sweatshirt every day,
Who'd recently begin to sport some peach fuzz above his upper lip,
Who often smelled of body odor and whose hair was a little too greasy.
The one who was a member of the horde of quiet poor--
Smart enough to fool you,
But not wealthy enough to keep up.

The student who slept through class,
Part of the group for whom school offered an escape from the wars at home.
A small island of relative peace amidst a sea of turbulent battles.

There were the busy bees,
With their AP classes and extracurriculars,
Not popular but not ostracized, either.

There were the ones who flitted between,
The social butterflies who somehow maintained the graces of all the above,
Few and far between,
But easy to talk to and unassuming,
The kind of people everyone likes.

There were the bullies, too.
The ones insecure in themselves,
Feasting on,
Reveling in,
Dependent upon,
The weaknesses of others.

All these and so many more.

We saw them all--

A brilliant camouflage of people and personalities and habits of life,
Some by choice,
Others not.

And like Plath's fig tree,
Which we'd read about in English class last week,
They all seemed so appealing,
In some way or another.

Maybe I wanted their smarts,
Or their popularity,
Or their anonymity,
Or their struggles,
Or their personality,
Or their strength,
Or their courage..

I didn't really know.

But I did know that,
Like the fig tree,
I would choose one,
And the others would die off,

But for now,
There they were,
An enticing dinner menu with altogether too many options.

And here we stood,
In the hallowed halls of high school,
The world ours for the taking,

And such an addicting collection of lifestyles in front of us.
Thanks to MP for the inspiration
 Jan 2018 atlast
endless lovers
 Jan 2018 atlast
what is it about me
that others can't seem to keep?
 Jan 2018 atlast
 Jan 2018 atlast
Broken hearts
Broken dreams
Time is all
That’s left to me

Dreams are fragile
They break like glass
Hearts are brittle
And rip apart

Memories are flawed
And pains too sharp
To stand the wear
And tear of Time

And as time flows
My broken dreams
Are swept away
And lost to me
 Jan 2018 atlast
Rohan P
light rain on these shaking hands,
shower the earth below,
ease the darkness of our heartland
repose—if only to forgo.
 Jan 2018 atlast
Dave Legalisa
He hid himself
with the shadows
of someone he adored.

He followed every step.
He watched every move.
He peeked at him
through any way possible.

And one day,
as the day turned blue
and he heard
the bamboo trees
danced with the cooling
wind of January,
he fixated himself,
fronting the mirror,
looking at the poor visage
he always wore
and realized,
*he was famished of a love
he knew he couldn't have.
this GAY LIFE *****.
The rain's still heavy here in ph - makes me think about him.
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