Wednesday, August 31, 2016

To The Black and Brown Girls Who Go Missing Before They Go Missing

By Elisabet Velasquez

 Maybe it was because of the last time
you ran away with the boy
who looked like God.

Maybe it was because of the way
you came back three days later
like you were God.

Maybe they expected you
to resurrect like this, again,

like you have always been a dead girl,
wanting to rise,
glory and miracle.

Like you just wanted your loved ones
to gather around you
so you made a funeral of your body.

Maybe they did not search for you
because you being gone

was not enough evidence
that you were indeed missing.

You so loud, the police are sure
your family will find you.
Crying wolf. Crying rape. Crying.
You so loud
that when you are silent,

they point your parents in the direction
of your echo and say look,
a cave in love with her own darkness.

When the media does not report the news
of your disappearance, you are not a girl worthy of a torch.

You, girl with bonfire hair, do not get to be illuminated.
Do not get to smile for the sake of being happy.

You have a prison grin. They say, it’s your mouth that keeps you captive.
You talk crazy before you talk freedom. It is no wonder you are missing.

Look, how your whole life is condensed to height, weight, eye color, tattoos, piercings.
You, get to be an art gallery on a light pole.

You, do not get to be someone’s favorite song.
You, get to be broken record.

You, do not get an amber Alert if your name is not Amber.
You, a name too hard to pronounce, must mean you difficult too.

Must mean you not worthy of a chorus to sing you into a prayer.
Must make you a melody we forgot the words too, a quiet hum.

A flash mob with no mob and no flash.
You, a dance too hard to memorize.

When they stumble upon your lifeless body in a lake,
they point out every other time in your life you’ve drowned.

Medical records will float to the surface before your body does:
Depression, Bi-Polar.

They will say you did this to yourself.

Girls like you are always found submerged in a body of water.
Always baptized, never saved.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

What Trump Voters May Be Thinking

By Calvin Trillin

A man who goes ballistic
At trivial rebukes
Is just the sort of person
One wants in charge of nukes

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

two nights before my 72nd birthday

By Charles Bukowski

sitting here on a boiling hot night while
after winning $232 at the track.
there's not much I can tell you except
if it weren't for my bad right leg
I don't feel much different than I did
30 or 40 years ago (except that
now I have more money and should be able
to afford a decent
burial). also,
I drive better automobiles and have
stopped carrying a
switchblade.
I am still looking for a hero, a role model,
but can't find one.
I am no more tolerant of Humanity
than I ever was.
I am not bored with myself and find
that I am the only one I can
turn to in time of
crisis.
I've been ready to die for decades and
I've been practicing, polishing up
for that end
but it's very
hot tonight
and I can think of little but
this fine cabernet,
that's gift enough for me.
sometimes I can't
believe I've come this far,
this has to be some kind of goddamned
miracle!
just another old guy
blinking at the forces,
smiling a little,
as the cities tremble and the left
hand rises,
clutching
something
real.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Your Shoulders Hold Up the World

By Carlos Drummond de Andrade

 A time comes when we no longer can say:
A time of total cleaning up.
A time when we no longer can say: my love.
Because love proved useless.
And the eyes don't cry.
And the hands do only rough work.
And the heart is dry.
They knock at our door in vain, we won't open.
We remain alone, the light turned off,
and our enormous eyes shine in the dark.
It is obvious we no longer know how to suffer.
And we want nothing from our friends.
Who cares if old age comes, what is old age?
Our shoulders are holding up the world
and it's lighter than a child's hand.
>Wars, famine, family fights inside buildings
>prove only that life goes on
and not everybody has freed themselves yet.
Some (the delicate ones) judging the spectacle cruel
will prefer to die.
A time comes when death doesn't help.
A time comes when life is an order.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Tao Te Ching, #31

Weapons are the tools of violence;
all decent men detest them.
Weapons are the tools of fear;
a decent man will avoid them
except in the direst of necessity
and, if compelled, will use them
only with the utmost restraint.
Peace is his highest value.
If the peace has been shattered,
how can he be content?
His enemies are not demons,
but human beings like himself.
He doesn't wish them personal harm.
Nor does he rejoice in victory.
How could he rejoice in victory
and delight in the slaughter of men?

He enters a battle gravely,
with sorrow and with great compassion,
as if he were attending a funeral.

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