Jan 28, 2017


Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp --
but it cuts off there, the rest illegible
rusted over or scratched away.
It's hard to tell what's natural anymore.

The plaque feels heavy in my arms
the corners ragged as clearly it belonged
to something bigger than itself once.
Not for a long time since some looter
or criminal or hooligan or Freedom Fighter
popped it off with some makeshift crowbar.

There are noises - or maybe there aren't -
but enough to stir me to flight.
I squeeze the tablet tight. An edge
cuts into my hand and I fight
the urge to shout or sigh
or lie down and wait.

Later in the semi-darkness
and half-safety of Home
I stare at the words, try to imagine a world
where they meant what they meant
where humans were free.

Jan 20, 2017

January 20, 2017

and try to hear it
on the outskirts
in the crossroads
intersections where we crash and collide
the drip dripping of an American Melt.

And to be near it
is dangerous sure
watch for the spatters and explosions
from the blood, sweat, and tears
that drip from the patty of pregnant expectation.

And the way to sear it
properly is to be watchful
and to flip it over and over
and over again, constantly in fact
but in a rush sometimes
the melt just gets pushed down
down until it drips.

And to be clear, it's
personal/historical/contextual -
the way you like your melt
is not quite how I like mine.
I know it's hard to walk in my shoes,
they don't fit you and they're
made in China.
But sooner or later
getting squeezed
and flattened
to cheers
means you start to believe it

and to fear it.