Dumpster fire/Jacksonville Florida

let's snap pictures of the piles of dirty clothes that corral us in.
Let's celebrate as chicken flavored Top Ramen boils to a ready state.
We can sit on toilets in unison and stare at the very last piece of toilet paper
and wonder if we should flip over or under.
We will float from left to right in election booths calling on the powers that be to
assist us by erecting new red light cameras and such.
We once were children that played drums on trash cans,
drove shopping cart race cars
and traced the faces on our kiss album covers.
We would run through alleys that carried the stench of musty bricks and mold.
We were barefoot, shirtless and dirty in the sun.
We huddled around a dumpster piled high with shit filled diapers,
rice-a-roni boxes and yesterday's news.
You stood on your toes to open the lid for me

as I ran our last match across the striking pad.
Behind the abandoned buildings we watched our frustrations burn.
We watched the firemen and dreamed of one day growing up

and doing something with pride.
We wanted to be strong and solid, to explode from where we were.
We saw it all going up in thick black smoke,
the 3 channel television baby sitters, the cheating dads,
the hand me down ensembles, the welfare lines,
policemen with toys at Christmas time,
the cupboard cockroaches that danced within the emptiness
and having to learn those fucking times tables.
Ahhhh....the beatings that followed and the sorrow that came.


Ray Strickland 1/15/2010

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