These arms of mine
Are twig thin
And my shoulders
Are paper slim.
I look so weak.
But I have fire in my blood
And wings on my feet.
When I was young and we were sparring
Punching, flailing, fists against flesh
I could never win. I was tired of losing
So I stopped letting them choose the fighting.
My arms may not be iron
Nor do my fists prevent defeat
But my soles have run over gravel
And can splinter blocks of concrete.
My hands may be child sized
And my wrists can't hold weight
But my nails are like a lion's
And my grip is stronger than fate.
When I was older, and the world punched
Trying to break my strength of mind
I did not punch back. I kicked
And clawed and strangled and bit.
World, I am not weak.
Though all you see are my flaws
Strength is not in a fist.
I am stronger, for I will use claws.
A man of darkness is what I am.
Dressed in rags from alleys of hex,
my language lost beneath
this filthy face.
Sunset is receding and midnight is alive,
climb the fire escape to reach the top of
the ledge and jump.
Lagoons are below I sink overtaken by bubbles,
emerge off the street towards a
crowded mirror to see a man of darkness?
A man of many is what I am.
The darkness is taking over me
eradicating herself within the valley of my being
slowly burning away the garden
my guardians cared for centuries
Nights are getting insufferably longer
more so when there's no starry sky
Clouds are accumulating all around
as ivy thoughts that drown the grace within
Do I stand to all
facing the adversity
me, myself, I have harbored
Even if that means looking at a mirror
Embracing the thought of me becoming
my own worst fear
If doing that means flowers will blossom again
Bring the black mirror
and along, my golden hammer
for I will tear this witch down
even if it means wrenching my soul away
To whom it may concern:
My name is irrelevant, my age I won’t share
but something’s been weighing on me
and I need you to care
See, my voice is small and often goes unheard
a minority, I am
don’t tell me it’s absurd
When you question my identity,
bring my shortcomings to light
when you tell me it’s nothing
and ask why must I fight?
I shake in my boots like a tree losing leaves
grow my hands into fists
my momma said kindness
so I fight like this
I fight for myself
I fight out of fear
I fight with my knowledge
when I sense ignorance lurks near
I fight for the hopeful
because hope still exists
I fight for the young
we will resist
You do not know of the nights we spend trembling,
waiting for good news to appear
but alas, come morn, good news or none
we whisper to the shadows
“yes, we are still here”
Melrose street had a quaint little house that sat perched on the corner.
The inside was bare and small and plain,
the dust in the air hung still, motes visible in shifting sunlight.
I would bang open the back door with a clatter and run
past the swing-set to the gate dividing my yard from the next.
The girl there had hair the same golden silk as her dog’s.
And I’d scrape my knees on that fence more times than I could count.
There I would play, I would climb her trees and then
drain the sweetness from all the honeysuckles in her yard,
the summer air enveloping me in its heavy embrace.
Heritage was a new housing division,
many houses under construction stood empty, just skeletons.
I’d walk through the layout, a throat coated in dust
and sit on the roof as colors faded from the sky.
It was in those streets that I broke my wrist and
my mom did not believe my pain.
My parents fought hard and often
about big things and about little things
and this skeleton house was no longer any home of mine.
Inside, the walls reverberated with every cry and
the holes punctured the once smooth interior,
and no matter how much damn wall putty was slathered on
you could see the jagged shape of imperfections,
the tearstained cheeks that never dried.
A constant reminder.
“Foreclosure” was a term I was unfamiliar with,
I just knew that the paper taped to our front door
meant we had to leave.
So we grabbed our items and began the trek from one
cramped space to the next, a multitude of changing environments,
never being able to stay in one place for more than a year.
And my parents no longer loved each other and I didn’t know why,
A rumpled love note with a lie, “I love you for always and forever”
the only evidence that hate wasn’t always in their lives.
I began to miss the sunny days of my childhood.
Of scraped knees and honeysuckles when everything,
Including the dust motes, were in place and comprehensible.
He didn't say goodbye before he died
Not that I expected him to.
When a man falls over, hit like that,
There's not much they generally do.
I mean, I would've liked a farewell
But what more can you ask
Than to have a friend fight alongside you
And work alongside you at everyday tasks.
We both knew our lives were on the line
But shit, you never think you'll be the one to go
Somehow you always think it will be the next guy
The one you don't know.
So yeah, I guess he's gone now.
I guess I haven't really got much to say for it.
Only that he died while standing
And not too many of us can do that.
He's not a hero to anyone but me
But that's all right...he didn't like those celebrity guys
He did his share, more than was fair
And so...another person dies.
That's how my friend got killed last week
Standing up like any other soldier should
The only thing left to say then
Is that I don't know if I would.
I was broke as usual it's okay I understood that far easier than I ever did being well off.
Long as there was a bottle and a room I could crash in I was good.
I never cared to gamble.
I lived my life that was a gamble enough
My money i preferred to be wasted upon myself not given to a fixed game played by overpaid children.
The only sport I ever loved was fighting.
I understood you against another.
In life its always you against the world.
I loved to fight even when you lose you know you've lived
I had stepped between those ropes often.
Paid the the price for a simple mistake and been knocked flat on my ass for it.
Boxing is a human chess match very few men have what it takes to go toe to toe with another.
Anyone can fall down it takes a man or mental patient to keep getting back up.
I had paid my dues broken bones multiple concussions between that and all the booze poured into my skull you think I would be braindead by now.
Some would tell you I already wad.
And those people would be like most full of shit speaking things they know nothing about.
Critics come in all forms.
Don't worry over there opinions nobody ever worth a shit sat on the sidelines.
I had nothing to show for my years.
I could barely get moving some days.
But when the drinks hit me right and some young shit called me out i still had that spark that fueled the fire.
Never take shit from.anyone no matter how tuff they seem.
Anyone can get caught anyone can bleed.
Remember kids its not what you can dish out.
Its how much you can take and keep going that makes you tuff.
I wore my scars like tattoo's.
Everyone of them had a story.
I never believed in luck.
I just kept going no matter what stood before me.
If I depended on luck in my life.
I would be up shit creek for the rest of my existence.
Never stay down no matter how easy it seems.
I still hate you but I want you to taste me.
Though I wouldn't dare ask, because
if I'm being honest I want to do nothing for you
in return. I want to punish you, deprive you.
To take from you--like a sacrifice to a goddess--
what I deserve. And to give you nothing
but the satisfaction of knowing that even after everything
you can still reach between my legs
and hold me like your doll.