Like the knot in those

doubled-laced L.A. Gears

fused needed strength of jaw,

sharp edge K-9 to begin the

unraveling processes;

Like the scorched dusty throat earth

cracked puckered lips

pressing in and praying

for a fix;

Like the first thing seen

in face of alarm clock

stone but to desperately be

gold bullion;

Like the last joint saved for rainy day

mouth vibrates seethes saliva

makes dick hard

betrays logic

as a yellow flame whips

around the heart.

Garish sunlight &

Pall of smoke

Country flag like blindfold

A bygone hymnal

The pen wrote the machine

The machine molds the pen

Bottom lines holy ghost &

Jesus gears

Behind the veil us

Now see

Stymied roots &

New names for slavery

Bright orange magnesium

Teeth hollow out an AC transit bus

drags black cloth

over factory lamps

Its poppy season again #itslit,

look at US, we are all poppies here

ain’t we beautiful?

Yeah but look at them over there tho’, those

them half-breed poppies, Cali-prickly poppies

with that prickly poppy privilege, they think they

better than us, or them quarter ones too,

they ain’t real poppies! They got that soft skin,

they wilt super easy in the sun, they get bought

up real quick repotted in the house,

they don’t know the struggle.

It’s poppy season again, #itslit,

We are all poppies here, look at

US ain’t we beautiful?

But we mixed, half prickly poppy of

Northern Europe. I can pass man.

No one knows what I am, I can blend in, I can ignore

All that shit around me.  I got more access man.

When I look at myself I don’t see color. They don’t like

us anyways. I’m better

Thanna ol’ regular Cali poppy.

But did you see how farmer-john last week ripped one of

US out the ground for no damn reason, it was brutal, rolled his roots

Around his index finger and yanked him out of his socket,

stepped on him, dragged him around, then used a scythe

to cut his stamens off, man that poppy was mixed—naw!

he was regular Cali poppy. He don’t count. He count. Farmer-

john didn’t know the difference, didn’t matter to him at the

end of the day. To him we all look the same.

I view a rose

everyday same rose

I scroll the length of it’s body

its wide spread and reaching pedals

one day it stripteases

it grows teeth builds a soapbox

and demands something controversial

it is between the nationalist and progressive but also

the atheist and messiah

I was the only viewer a twitch later

one million it whispered silent poems

about abuse and trauma,

it showed me its

a friend’s child’s birth, then a funeral,

Indica strains, travels around the world,

Afterschool brawls, violence, opulence,

fantasy, beauty and horror gushing down

its sepal to round of Adam’s apple

sometimes it solicits erotic encounters via webcam

in direct messages, it is the glass ceiling it exploits

the weak but in the same beat empowers it

all colors and genders but also reflects

self-hate and xenophobia

the rapper becoming irrelevant

hangs on for relevancy like a cobweb caught on a thorn

the seekers of self-worth make businesses here

my eyes backflip in place, the surveyor of dreams

realized, the purveyor of feuding families,

light

it scratches my corneas I want to quit the rose,

avoid it’s fire but I am so drawn to it, it fulfills the will

of my addictive personality caught in swings of an 8

it shimmy-skips in my subconscious

stirs up lust but also passages of inspiration, thankfully

I know I have choices still in this world where

choice is becoming either a revolutionary act

or a dying pastime. The mystery of life

is dead; a browned apple core

rolls against the wind.

After Baldwin

I crave a secure mooring post

because freedom is too damn unbearable

life defined by emotional attachés

I’m not afraid of losing people

as much, being afraid of not being tied to

someone or an idea even is another thing entirely

the parent-child co-dependency,

lover to therapist-parent,

friend to bank account, like a solid wooden post

dug several feet into subsurface, its surety,

it’s a controlled environment yet I knew

as a child constant flux

traffic of parent’s lovers, tide in tide out

one post to the next freedom is fear is

the horror of loneliness

being out at sea too long without that

sure without that grounded,

but it’s so necessary now

not to play it safe, to let go, to uproot

and burn, to dismantle it all, to not inventing

something because someone says its right

I woke up with my mind

evolution on

slip of mooring line’s knot,

that slow drift from dock

open blue waters

the diamond dance of sunlight

a soft bell will play

a Yes to life

soluble I want to

fizz, bubble, spin

no longer my disc golden be

mass more sea than no

tide fighting instead rotating  

air bubbles seeping tumbling

ceilings to I am like rising

rising electric guitar atmospherics Petit Sekou

to and my rise spindle until my belly

face up to sun disk, like offering, I tide

tide salient dissolve to sky

whole god I reflect I cry

golden sunset on this

no more man than 

sea no one see

my weight

in tears my primordials

birthed in me, that lover

caged me

After RB

Every part of this glorious city

were brooding monuments

rusted over with scathing eyes,

gargoyles chop-licking in

view of my flesh, collapsing

then folding down on me, every block

felt like a razor slit, the heat like a ton pressing

down on top of me, how every beautiful thing:

its faces, its new lips and charming smiles

thoughts about divulging in them

a betrayal, these porticoes and columns,

These brilliant corners web of hand, hill of palm,

Almond of eye, round of nose, dug into me, even

its awesome sunset over Templo Debod

was a pool of agony and now, a wine glass

of radical honesty to flush out the sty

of ego and I’ve taken back me,

Now this city is a vibrant flower

In bloom, a new day after a good rest,

The caress of someone new on my jawline,

It’s a sweet hello, the soft kiss of spring fulfilling its

life waking up around

you is a glorious gift.

A cherry red balloon

to celebrate an end

big and bulbous a window of light

curves around the belly; the golden-oak

luminescence of whiskey

of it the joy in this period

grief insatiable, its neck-

mouth are mine

it juices smoky brown sugar;

tonight, I will reminisce like Icarus

into a bed

of goose down

Stuck in the middle of this perfect

Case with many faces, I hold the light,

I manipulate it to my pleasure, my body

How it glistens and gleams and sparkles

How it lifts the room, a person’s mood,

A person’s confidence, I have become the

Perfect accessory, how they drape me

Over their wrists, I became a fixture

for marriage bonds in a religion

that was forced on me, they found me

In the earth, said to have given me life

Said I had no language no birth rite

They desire and worship my body

Some appropriate my look,

They touch me whenever they get the chance

I don’t desire to be objectified, lightened my skin,

tried to conceal my curves or accentuate

them more to fulfill a fantasy mysterious

imbedded in fear and fetish, they put down

money and like to call me “sold”

I was good, I was raw, I was uncut,

Until they uprooted my whole existence

In value of net-worth, by my color

My weight, my luster, my shine, sold

To the highest bidder, they like to call me

“asset” the way I dance

And entertain at a ball, the way I turn a

Neck into a dancehall, made to shuck-n-jive

For some blue-eyes. Said life would be better,

Cut down to meet the “civilized” expectations,

A thing to be conquered, a frontier, a continent

To be called, “mine” from a people

who had nothing but the color

Of their skin.