Friday, February 14, 2014
Puddles and other places
I am seen throughout the day, stranger
to the world and to myself. A portion
of my being slowly evaporates underneath
Weeping Willows and AC’s that droop
out of 3rd floor windows. I walk past a park
in the middle of July and watch
balls fly, there is no place that kids have to be.
Reminders of intruders
who party on the balcony of my conscience.
I carry a lot with me in different compartments,
but it is the items I have left inside of forgotten pockets
that I desire to reintroduce to my fingertips.
Falling out of my dreams, parachutes
containing incomplete goals imagined
on dim-lit days. My toes yearning to be comfortable
inside damp, disfigured boots. My previous success
is an equation I can no longer compute.
I walk swiftly past store windows to avoid eye
contact with the man no longer intact, the man
in black, black backpack, black hat, swallowing
a black......gun. Future memories blown out the back
landing in cracks where the sidewalk and street meet, until
a machine comes by and sweeps them away.
Roofers that quit and didn’t take the ladder down. Good kid,
madder now, scowl, molded angry brow because there
are forces which will not allow the man I witness
throughout the day to be present now.
Sunday, January 19, 2014
Alex Foster Elegy By Jasen Sousa
Drift asleep with the TV on.
White noise. Actors and actresses recite
words that someone else wrote. Wrinkles that form
on facial temples and creep toward the cornea are scientific evidence
that it hurts to watch. Vibrations, humming, buzzing, and then
it shatters! A glass bottle filled
with the purest liquid mankind is capable of creating.
It freezes on the pavement during
a frigid January evening.
Drift asleep with the lights on.
White noise. Navigate through midnight
canals on an unsteady raft dimly
lit by translucent rays that sneak through manhole covers. Unfamiliar
friends stand on the outskirts of intelligence and imagination, snickering,
whispering directions to destinations
you do not wish to return to.
Drift asleep with the internet on.
White noise. Crowds watch you rest, listen
to you breathe and record the exact number
of seconds it takes for your chest to raise and lower.
Take gossip off the walls, place it into a blender,
pour the truth into a spray paint can
and tag the world with the most flamboyant font
it has ever witnessed.
Drift asleep with the radio on.
White noise. Let the lyrics put
you in a peaceful rest, but before they do
make sure you memorize the verse
about the single rim attached to a rusty backboard
that you can hang on all day without ever coming down,
the verse about the thinker and philosopher that left behind quotes
and ideas that didn’t get the opportunity to take shape,
and finally, the verse about the artist that left an unfinished charcoal sketch
containing countless interpretations
of what it means to be free.
Saturday, May 18, 2013
Old Pay Stubs
By Jasen Sousa
Evenings after still frozen dinners
and days before his envelope would be flung
to him like a bone, across a cigarette scarred
wooden break room table, he would stooper in his damp
Boot laces tied tightly around his tender ankles,
socks folded back hair on his legs
in ways it was not meant to be bent,
knees pressed against his pants
like a child's face to a window on a misting Saturday.
There were no dishes to scrape clean, no
trash, but a waste basket filled with wrinkled
receipts that angered him every time
he walked by.
He remembered it all like he needed
to be back the next morning at 7:00 A.M.
as he slept uncomfortably nude on top
of tucked-in sheets starring at a tie which hung
over the back of a chair swaying like a clock pendulum
from an after midnight May breeze.
Friday, January 18, 2013
An empty pair of slippers rests
next to the leg of an empty chair. A newly
started book, spine arched at a curious
angle by the window. Steam from near-by simmering coffee
dissipates as shadows nap underneath bridges waiting
to dance with sunrise.
Blinking traffic lights sway in shallow puddles
without anyone else on the road to interfere. A long
winter, almost over, camping mounds of stubborn snow
still not fully melted. Slopping branches of leafless
sycamore trees tap your shoulders,
eager for a reunion.
Cafes in the local square have shut down
for the evening, unaware of what you had left to spend. You gaze
through a toy store window, drawn to trains
that never stop traveling, drawn
to a smirking clown who makes you forget
you ever aged at all.
It is getting late and you hear your parents
calling you home. They have neatly tucked in
your chair, put away your slippers, and left a dim light
on in your room, just bright enough for you to see
what is necessary when you arrive.
And when you awake in spring
you will be welcomed by wondering skies
painted auburn by hands no longer restricted
by the wires and cords that life confuses us with.
Additional Online Links:
Additional Online Links:
Monday, December 17, 2012
It’s Later than Early By Jasen Sousa
It’s Later than Early
The thought was trapped
inside a Boston tunnel
stuck behind guilt and red break lights,
surrounded by yellow
hues which couldn't even inspire
small insects to walk freely
on unbalanced land
that was fraudulently built.
It was still like a puddle
resting on a dawn city street,
like a half-smoked
cigarette that leaked smoke
long after a flick
from his calloused fingers.
His paycheck ended up
inside the palms of charismatic
bartenders and agile women
who shook as much as the dreams
he could no longer conjure up.
When the future is nothing
but a weekend, and reality is nothing
but the time you get home from work.
Inside an empty apartment,
inside an empty fridge
where eyelids are unbalanced
and dusty as the blinds
that kept him hidden
more than the stained uniform
that bared cursive letters
arranged in way that no longer spelled his name.
It was quiet like the vision
that never propelled him to move forward,
like the vocal cords
which never allowed him
to formulate great words into meaningful sentences
It's later than early
and his hands remained inside
his empty front pockets, warm, comfortable,
afraid to touch objects
coated with layers of freedom.
Saturday, November 10, 2012
Elderly Rainbows By Jasen Sousa
He desired to shape concepts into objects
unknown by man. Instead, that which bubbled
inside his head transformed into dented
cans that looters wouldn't bring back
to their sacred land.
He wondered how to mold abstract ideas
into something concrete that would serve as foundation
for cities and paved streets. Instead they sat, untouched
by human hands like sand on winter beaches.
He hoped for something specific, like tales
written on wooden ship sails, memorized
by the Atlantic and Pacific. But it's like
he never existed, slept in the same house
that became empty as the gambler's account.
His growth rested underneath barriers
of skin and pleasure like lawns
buried underneath frozen leaves and snow.
His desires sat like used cars with
fog on their windshields and a slight drizzle
on their frames, as brush grew along
sagging fences weighed down
by the poet's unwritten sentences.
He wanted to find a way to bottle rainbows
in oil-slicked puddles, before they disappeared
like eyeglass dents on the elderly man's nose,
before it was too late to notice what he swept away.