Neighborhoods

Written in late summer 2012. Not that great – treads familiar territory, lacks imaginative descriptions – but has a somewhat redeeming (if already understood) concept sometimes nice to regain awareness of.

Stay out of the nasty neighborhoods,

where crime is rampant, muggings and druggings,

the scrawled walls collapse onto the filthy asphalt,

dark people stumble, stare, sleep and shout

outside crumbly rusting apartment hovels,

and might ask you for cash or knife you.

Better keep to the clean and glittery districts

where all the crime is fathoms away,

the pristine boutique products mugged of sweat

and foreign slavish work and resource,

the smooth-papered skyscraped signs drugging

with airbrushed happy-sex-pleasure fantasies

sold in the shops below courtesy of the commie Chinese proles

who weave and wire the fabrics and circuitry

to shroud and tote the body apolitic but hungry and lost.

Live here and get this go the edificial tableaux

above the cleanswept sidewalks wide for double shopping bags

where briskly strut and stroll sharp and light throngs

who do not stare nor speak, and sleep miles removed,

the polite and dignified way to inhabit a street,

astute avoidance and constant passage to escape.

Slick-washed glass condos allow for broad

bay- and cityscapes on high to the monied visionless,

who will never ask for your cash, just rely on

the unctuous suggestion that you are not enough

without billboard clothes and hair and hot new toys,

and whose knifing is court-delayed, Kafkaesque.

You don’t want things honest, in the open, personal,

because that would not be safe.

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