outside room forty three

Through assimilation, simile, and metaphor
We see into project corridors
Outside door 43, the lampshade shakes violently
Intermittently like car blinkers, the light flickers
Her concussions would lead to significant repercussions
Conscious I am, so consciously I see
Crackhead logic of addiction, leading to contradictions
I love you so I beat your ass
I love you so I feed you with the very same substance that kills you
Give you a needle and expect you to show gratitude by falling to your knees
Crackhead logic often misreads life’s simplest signals
Those that aren’t subliminal,
As fresh and obvious as drool on a new day’s pillow
Rest in peace is engraved on the tombstone in concave lettering
An unfittingly calm setting for a life so turbulent
Violence has a scent that is revolting and interesting just the same
Small children, growing up around it, inhale it into their brains
Where is resides and festers
The leading cause of rapists and child molesters
See I understand
The story does not always begin with the guilty
And society is so used to Court TV that it lacks sympathy
A sympathetic ear, a sympathetic heart, a sympathetic mind, forget it
So when her little son, pulled back the trigger, while cocking the gun
I saw self defense when others saw negligence mixed with vengeance
The fact that, as he lay bleeding, the young boy repeatedly punched him
Was justification to me, while others saw it as fruits of cursed semen
the prequel tales of a young demon
The light flickered outside room 43
His mother came home and called the cops
The jail bars close on a fourteen year old and our story stops


Rounds of Conscience

He grew up on the lonely streets of New York, like a rose springing from the dusty streets
Concrete would then be his father and we would then understand why he was so hard
So cold, so bold, and so knowledged
Not college educated but with all the makings of a philosopher none the less
His stress found its way into his music and his music found its way on to bootleg CDs
Sold on Halsey St. and over on Flatbush Ave. by a guy name Leon
His songs were of a different melody, his words were of a different path
As though he was talking on behalf of all of us lost in this world, a dark room with no corners
Former greatness buried in the history of our races, apparent in our faces but not in our speech
Incomplete sentences, broken language, sort of like Creole, Ebonics
Chronicly an insult that he understood and put in his words, he was called Conscience
Nonsense he didn’t stand for, a thin, light-skin man with a frizzy little afro that would play on his piano and sing
Ringing in the ears of all would dare to hear was contemplations and reflections of a man uneducated but with a mental PhD
Harmony and lyrics were his conduit, a path for electricity to flow and provide energy
We who heard him were mesmerized as though we were plugged into his passion
His actions springing fountains of thoughts within, though his words would prove to out live him

His songs were interesting, provocative, intellectual, and motivating though he could not get a music deal
Real were his words, telling us about how American high society, white society, was worse than any drug to minorities
Poorer needs were often overlooked, as corporate America continued to build share holder wealth
They, only caring for self, stuff millions of dollars in their pockets and when a million more wasn’t coming
Had to do something, how could they live on a measly couple hundred of thousand dollars
Scholars as the are, cut costs by laying off the low wage jobs
Sobs constantly going unanswered as the system continues to play the blues
Bad news, he lived during a slight economic depression
Confession; he was really laid off and bitter because of the job he ended up losing
Refusing at any time to just let it go, instead choosing to let everyone know what high society had done to the poor black child
So while the depression continued and the poor people were wondering how they would eat
The people on Wall Street suffered as well, only taking five digit bonuses, well short of a million
Children of those would have to go without the recreations of riding in a new edition Maybach
Stop the Madness was the title of that track
I sit wishing I could hit replay and bring him back

He played his guitar to lyrics speaking of dramatic irony
Monotony in our methods of addressing the injustices were so tragic
Pragmatic approaches in his opinion would have lent to a better resolution and more good
Instead of rioting in our own neighborhood, take the problems to up town
Down then would come change, put on a definitely rapid pace, no cash needed fast lanes
Shame that his life was a three round knockout, much too short in the eyes of the audience
He had one song about marijuana puffers, heroine addicts, meth lovers, and crack feigns
Meanings in his verses were clear like water, and bullet like direct
Without fears or regrets he named the dealers by name
Trying to perpetuate change, stop constant cycles of relapse
Perhaps deceived by his fame, forgetting he was just a local phenomenon
Gone from this earth, taken by a bullet from one of the same mentioned dealers
Better term for them would have to be hope-stealers
Determined was one person that had been in the audience for everyone to know him
Honored, decorated, motivated, known through this poem

Avid Minds, Avid Listening, Avid Souls

Ole Bessie


I stole a dirt bike and somebody told pop-pop damn!!!! He don’t play that shit he’s a mean old man. He made me pick out my own switch just to beat my ass with it. At first I bought him this little limb and the way he looked at me I knew I was really going to get it then. He went to the trunk of his car and pulled out Ole Bessie. I immediately started to cry. I could of shitted on myself, DAMN…DAMN… DAMN…WHY!!! You see Ole Bessie was this belt about a inch thick with holes that ran down the middle of it. The belt buckle I think was made of lead and when he hit you with it that was your ass. Pop-Pop walked over with Ole Bessie in hand and started to talk to me… he said, “Why did you take that bike it didn’t belong to you. You know better boy what has gotten into you.” I was scared as hell the tears were streaming down my face and snot running out my nose. I opened my mouth hoping to say something intelligent and all that came out was “they gave it to me.” Boy here come Ole Bessie flying from the sky… wham, on my legs wham on my back wham, wham, wham on my butt. Ole Bessie was coming from all directions and pop-pop never broke a sweat. He gave me about 10 more hits but it seemed like he was beating my ass for about 20 more minutes. When he got done my ass my arms my legs my back shit my legs and my back had so many whelps for a minute I thought I was a run-away slave. The ass whooping I got that day should go down in history. Pop-Pop taught me a lesson about stealing never again did I take something that didn’t belong to me. Now I have a son of my own and I tell him the story of what happened to me that day. Hoping he stays on the right path. Because what he don’t know is that I inherited Ole Bessie.

Ménage a Trois

Man: It was evil.
Woman: It was insidious.

Man/Woman (together): We each thought it was the other until it spoke to us
in our own voices and then we knew we had a vampire.

It flew at us like the past, made a mockery of the future we

Man: Had me thinking she wasn’t the sky I flew in.

Woman: Had me thinking he wasn’t the rock I stood on.

Man/Woman (together): Had us thinking we were each other’s enemy.

Man: Loaded and cocked. My words were fists.

Woman: Stealth bomber. Appeared out of nowhere. Disappeared into pain.

Man: I lost my job.

Woman: I got a promotion.

Man: Attitude problems. I spoke a black man’s language.

Woman: There’s a time and a place. Mouths to feed.

Man/Woman: That’s when it bit.

Man: Damn mosquitoes…

Woman: …sucking our blood.

Man: I slapped at them.

Woman: I sprayed repellant.

Man/Woman: But it wasn’t mosquitoes. Our blood was being drained.

Vampire: The blood was rich. Full of love and life. They had no right to it.
I made it mine. Became big and strong. Starting eyeing the children.
Classic albatross.

Man/Woman: We stood looking at the couple in the mirror.

Woman: Lean.

Man: Fighting lean.

Man: Fuck this shit.

Woman: My name’s not Kendra.

Man: You love me?

Woman: I love you.

Man: You ready?

Woman: I’m ready.

Are you positive?

Life is a bitch. I used to enjoy life. But to me life has so many downfalls and they all begin like this…… “Everything was going good up until that day.” Well in my life everything wasnt so good and I knew that worst had not visited me yet but was coming. My boyfriend had played all his cards just to get me to tlak to him. And once we started kicking it things were really good for about the first 2 months or so. Then he started acting out always wanted to leave early and come home late but I let that slide. I started to trip when he would come home late and wake me up out of my sleep just to have sex. Now in the beginning when he wasnt chasing trash in the streets the sex used to be something you couldnt get enough of but once he started getting his time to do whatever he was doing or should I say whoever he was doing the sex unlike us did an whole 69. Sex that udes to be fun, sweet, sexy, long, and craving turned into sweaty, hot, rough, quick, nightmares of disgust. Not only was the sex the problem the whole relationship change but none of it ws good. When he cheated he was so obvious but I never made it a big issue cause I was scared at the time. Not only did this boy direspect me but he hit me and abused me in more ways than one. But I did my dirt too. I just never got caught cause I am a real bitch to just tell him. But when the first relationship was over I found out that he had HIV and that he had gave it to me but that first girl he gave it to is his babymama but she is also the one he keeps running back to. So time went by slowly after our break then we got back together and this time it didnt even last 2 weeks but just like always in the beginning the sex is the bomb but I knew it had changed so I left again and you can guess who ran to again. So there we were a month ago trying to work it out once more but it didnt last. We are all in love. But he is confused about who really loves him because she doesnt have to really love you because she is your baby’s mama. But to wrap this up I feel obligated to run back to him whenever he calls because I refused to go thru this alone. Its not right for someone to love you and hurt you and then dismiss you. I am going to get revenge on him and her but I left out alot of details but they will both pay for ruining my life and I am absolutely positive about that………. HIV positive to be exact…….

Too Late

You had me so confused
Had me asking questions I already knew the answers to like
Does he love me?
How will I feel?
Is he worth it?
Are some of the questions you had me asking myself.
You had me wondering if I should put you before my physical, mental, and emotional health.

I’ve been told about dudes like you
You know, dudes who only see you as somebody to do it to.
You had me disrespecting my moms
Had me arguing with her for only pointing out the truth
Even my friends saw right through you
But I refused to listen you had me acting so uncouth.

It was as if I had been placed under a spell
You could do no wrong as far as I could tell.
In such a short time you had captivated me.
Im just a little upset it took me so long to see.

I finally got the answers to those questions
No, he didnt love me,
Horrible is how I would feel,
And, Hell naw, he aint worth it!
It took me about a minute to get those answers.
Too bad that minute didnt come until the morning after

by Juaneka Gore…Poetic_Soul

Kya’s Story


Positive!!! I can’t believe this, my whole life flashed before my eyes. It seems just

yesterday I was a young girl growing up in the 80’s. Life couldn’t get much better than

planet rock on the radio and skating to play it at your own risk at the roller rink. That’s

when I was funky fresh 2 death, blazen- shouting out “ho now & whip-whip”. Back when

I jumped double-dutch and played hide and go get it in the park after dark. Going

swimming at the community pool and eating free lunch in the park. (Remember those

bolonga and cheese sandwiches or that thick peanut butter and jelly on the round roll.)

Fighting with the girls in the neighborhood about my boyfriend not knowing he was

supposed to be ‘what’ their boyfriend. Life was simple before the weed smoking, 40

drinking, M.D. 20/20 strawberry banana red sipping, cutting class, playing hooky and

running from the truant officer.

1983 jumbos now on the scene, everybody trying to clock them dollars,

turned wanna be gangsters and hustlers. Big Daddy Kane said, “anything goes when it comes

to hoes cause pimping ain’t easy.” Now ain’t that the truth cause crack was

the pimp and it made me its hoe! Now I’m living in hell with this unquenchable thirst.

Doing what I do, by any means necessary, what ever works to get that next fix, that blast.

Never quite like the first, but trying to make this hit last. Life was simple

before county lockup with the jones. My body’s aching stomach hurts I’m crying out,

“Please God take this pain away from me, I promise I won’t use anymore.”

Mid 90’s I’m coming home clean and sober. Brighter

days are here. I’m working got a new car, apartment, and a new man. Life couldn’t get

much better than this, so it seems, there are some rumors going around town about the

true love that I’ve found. They say, “do you know he got that batman, that thang –thang,

the As-I-Die-Slowly.” I don’t believe nothing they say, I’m going to get checked to prove

them all wrong, because my man loves me and he wouldn’t keep something like that

from me. The doctor’s office called, it took 2 weeks for the results to come in, my

appointment tomorrow at noon. As I anxiously sit in the waiting area I hear my name

called. I follow the nurse to where the doctor is waiting, he asks me to sit down, checks

his chart turns to me and says, “Ms. Brown I’m sorry to inform you that you are HIV positive.”

Positive –‘DAMN’ I’m positive.

After being told that your HIV Positive, so much runs thru ones mind. I want to live I don’t

want to die. Why did this happen to me? What do I tell my family, how will my friends treat me.

How could the man that I love do this to me? The drive home was grueling, I stopped off to the

neighborhood bar for drinks to calm my nerves some. Got to tell my man what he’s done,

‘DAMN!’ For the first time in a long time everything in my life was going right. Was there

something In my past that I had to atone for, If so why does the repayment have to be death? I

feel like I’m being punished, Why me?

My nerves are still a mess, so I have one more drink then I leave. I get to the house my man

is there. I go inside and take off my jacket, I sit down beside him, he asks how was my day and tell him what the

doctor said. He denies that it was he who has given me this disease. I tell him what my friends were saying. He

became angry then punches me in my face!!!! And that punch lead to other punches followed by

kicks, he beat me to a bloody pulp. And as he left the house he spit on me while my lifeless body

laid on that living room floor.

I was bleeding, crying, hurting, and feeling sorry for myself on that living room floor. So

much runs through ones mind. Maybe he didn’t give it to me. Maybe it’s me. But I knew better, I

know for a fact that it was my man who handed me this death sentence like he was judge and jury

himself. Now I’m wondering, How many others have fallen pray to his ill disregard for life? How

many innocent victims he has left behind? Yes, victims for Love, We are victims for wanting

someone to love us, victims for wanting to give our love unconditional. Victims because we had listened to a

man that said all the right things, “your beautiful, I need you, you complete me, I Love You.”

So much runs through ones mind. As I lay in this hospital bed looking back, Dear hearts

choose life. Choose life, there is no one more important then yourself. If he says that

“the condom is too tight”, “doesn’t fit”, “it doesn’t feel natural”, “why should he have too”…

Love yourself enough and CHOOSE TO LIVE!