Sunday, July 10, 2011


i sat in dirty apartments
smoking cigarettes
drinking cheap whiskey
looking out of screenless windows
at the humanity on urban streets

roach infested diners
kept my body nourished
i had a soul sickness
so i wrote it all down
on grocery bags
with nubs of worn-out pencils
#2s if i recall correctly

and you know what?
the words sustained me
and as my dramas unfolded
my realities came together
but only if i really looked for them

so i took buses to taverns
dark places i feared to enter
and i took pictures with a cheap camera
so i could paint what i saw on canvases
i worked in dingy basements
with inadequate lighting
i worked in mold, dust and decay

i knocked on a million doors
and they were slammed in my face
but the few that opened just a crack
were opened by the force of my foot
i barged right in, fearlessly

i saw the "light"
i saw the "high life"
and the best of things
i sat with the laughing, well-heeled, elite
i smelled their colognes
i ate aged beef and drank single malt scotch
i smoked cuban cigars
and everyone claimed to be my friend

so i held court every weekend
like a king on his throne
i had finally arrived
it was my time
and time moved fast
my head was spinning
it was a disneyesque world
all of it fantasy, and dreams

and after years of this
i found myself wanting the open window
the screenless window
and dead flies on fly strips
the smell of sweat and urine
in lesser places
for this was more real to me
because the humanity there
laughed at cruel jokes
but it was good laughter
and it was felt by all
not done out of obligation
so, i quit the scene of the well-to-do

i managed to quit the low life as well
i found a place in the middle
that was less painful than the extremes
but i was still in a dangerous place
because i still had to live there
inside my own head.

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