Three Poems – Robert Lashley

Midnight choir

 

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Motherfucker at the Club

After Wallace Stevens (Mwahahahaha!)

I.
Among twenty bros at the club
the only thing moving toward my cousin
was the eye of the motherfucker.

II.
I was of three minds
like the IQ
of the motherfucker at the club.

III.
The motherfucker at the club
whirled in the autumn wind.
It was a small part of some corny bro dance.

IV.
A Maxim magazine and Axe body spray
are one.
A Maxim magazine, Axe body spray
and a motherfucker at the club
are one.

V.
I do not know which to prefer,
the time when the motherfucker at the club
says to my cousin
"Girl, I want to sop you up like a biscuit."
or
Girl, you look good enough to season greens with."
or
"Girl, if your left leg is Christmas, and your right leg
is New Years, can I visit you
between the holidays?"

VI.
Bros filled the window with
barbaric glasses of liquor
a rapper drank on BET.
The motherfucker at the club
drank them, to and fro
an indecipherable case.

VII.
Oh thin bros of Seattle,
why do you imagine that you
could put roofalyn in my cousin’s drink?
Do you not know my juvenile assault record
when you walk the feet
of young lady around me?

VIII.
I know Noble accents
and lucid, inescapable rhythms,
but I know too
that if the motherfucker at the club
gives her that drink, I will catch a case.

IX.
When the motherfucker at the club
flew out the window,
it marked the many circles of black around his eye.

X.
At the sight of the motherfucker at the club
flying outside the window,
a bawl of euphony cried out
What did I tell you? What the fuck did I tell you?
If you put your hands on my cousin again
I will cut the bacon off your back and fry it
to your goddamn daddy.
I swear before god, boy,
I’ll bust your head to the white meat
and kick you up and down this block
till your ass tore out the frame
And what the rest of your bros looking at?
Which one of your motherfuckers wanna axe
the dentist to get they teeth fixed.
Don’t let the smooth tweed fool you!
 
XI.
The motherfucker at the club ran past downtown
with a busted hand.
Once, a fear pierced him
in that he mistook
someone else
for a person who was driven away.

XII.
The wind is howling.
The motherfucker at the club is somewhere in a corner.

XIII.
Grrrrrrrrr



How Not to Think About Slavery While Listening to Three 6 Mafia

(Or, No, I Don’t Think It’s That Hard Out Here for a Pimp)

 
Look away from their ice, the glitter and such.
Do not think of cattle, oxen, or pain
for their pictures, though silent, say far too much.

Don't think of their blood, the soul catcher’s punch,
the taking of bounty with encrusted chain.
Look away from the ice, the glitter and such.

Don't think of the gentry, the dawg's or the Dutch
nor the color of their dirt, their clay or their grain
for their pictures, though silent, say far too much.

Don't think of their auction, their prod or their touch
their sizing of the breast, testicles, brain.
Look away from the ice, the glitter and such.

Don’t think of the bee, the chopping block crutch
and the cut of the day, come shine or come rain
for their pictures, though silent, say far too much.

To think of it all is to think far too much.
To think far too much is to think you’re insane.
Look away from their ice, the glitter and such
for their pictures, though silent, say far too much. 

 

11th and Tacoma Avenue, the Morning of Pride Parade, 15 Days After Jermaine Smoked Himself Away 

The streets will be full soon.

The sun will show out here

in many shapes and colors.
Love then will exhibit

its unending gift for metaphor,
and the McDonalds will not arch
like your gravestone.

Bodies bright and beautiful
will fill all the streets
in place of your bullies
and tormentors.
Traffic will overflow
with an undefined light
that no parent will put asunder
(though the midnight of your mind
that was cast by your family
will coat every color here
in shadow).

The light that never lit for you
will burn fierce but distant.

The day you never saw
will come, and then go.

The home you so begged for

but never received

will be here, but now you're away.

Jerusalem will be free (for a day)
from that book

but it will take on the countenance

of your face.

 

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About Robert Lashley.

Like his hero James Baldwin, Robert Lashley wants to be an Honest man and a good writer. His full length book, "The Homeboy Songs", will be published by Small Doggies Press in April. View all posts by Robert Lashley.

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