There's this poem about Craig
Stalking me lately
But I haven't written a word of it thus far,
I reckon I don't trust its coyote paw prints
Or it’s shadow moths kept in a jar.
I remember the day Rick Ivy called me
And how I didn't even cry
For Craig by then was right there beside me
Some shine tricksters never die.
It's a poem about the Ones, who ride the side Other,
No one wants to believe that I see
On how I saw sweet Brady Green dancing
In a Memphis cosmic sky-mist Xmas tree
Or her face shining 1000x from the chapel door Exit
How Aunt Elisabeth in her wake smiled at me
Something I could never fully describe.
It's the one that explains how it's really beyond words
That I’d best make a painting instead
Some Ones have a way of living unspoken,
Eternal visions remaining unread.
So a poem is no measure,
For this that I owe you,
Nor dances, or paintings one-step beyond
It is the Light-show connecting the Love that you gave me
To others, when they come around.
Long after I left you without looking back
Your care kept me living a life above ground
Now you know that’s why I do what I do
You helped me back then so that I’d stick around
And be here for someone else too.
There's this poem about Craig
You’re strong as an ox he groaned
Southern backstreet bad
I was wrestling my dad
I had double vision
He was triple tired
I was nimble in quicksand
Cornered he was mired
Coins tossed for his reasons to fight
My runaway jaunt
Made Ma’s hair ghost white
She was grieving and gaunt
Back from out west
Mama had missed me like
I’d been in the cuckoo’s nest
Dad would’ve thrown me out
But he was torn
Between the woman he adored and
The daughter he scorned
And I was just like him
A renegade spin
Needled in gin
Space between my teeth
Button nose slim
My dad and I were thick as thieves
Way back then
He was an orphan
I was not
His past life of misery
He never forgot
Until I awoke like a sage
For the government settlers
Who made our people rot
Our underground ancestors
Grew into trees
I roamed through their roots
On my hands and my knees
I knew I was born outta
Dust weeds and grit
A twisted old oak
Said don’t feel so different
In a whisper, the tree spoke
To my spinning redhead
Your father & mother
Will someday be dead
Like your grandma your grandpa
Like all theirs and bleaker
We hear you loud and clear
We know you’re a seeker
A tribe is a circle
And you’re strong as an ox
As your dad once proclaimed
I'm a poet and I know it
Smacked in the jaw
By Robert Browning's glove
Now Bob Dylan can sew it
As if all those other poems and paintings and jobs and songs
for the night maid to sweep up.
This is it. Quality. Perfection.
Look it over.
Look it up and down.
Under, behind, inside and out.
Lovers friends children ancestors ghosts demons and angels
This one's for you,
Stay thirsty my friends.
The best student always failing,
loves failing again,
Her spiraling human disfortune has floundered diving into pools of
madness is not only a myth a burden
a caricature of itself
it is the lifeboat
sinking and rising
again and again
It seems like only yesterday. Fencing boxing crashing breaking and burning anything in my way to hold onto love or to steal its ghost in the mask. The proverbial Rebel throwing the lug wrench off a cliff, I jumped into music writing singing & playing while my paintings kept me alive. Friends tolerated my insanity. An Odd Job or one of the Hellcats.
Now I know a girl in the 'hood, if she doesn't watch out she's gonna get diced or take out someone else. It's like someone took me off the shelf and dusted me off like an old encyclopedia, opened it up to the page on Diane Clones. Except she's not an artist or a musician. I think she's going to die of soul starvation.
What goes around comes around. I can only thank my lucky stars to be alive. They thought I was a goner too.
At Blue Island & 16th Street:
Deep down inside.
You know the place
with faces in the walls
that you can't really see
you know they are there
and they can see you
but you don't really care
you've been there too
the cool damp dark hard dirt grit
twisted metal rust
stone walls grind away
any memory of a home
if you ever had one
2008 Pilsen/Little Village in Chicago.