• Night Ride (1)

    Dark horizons

    Cuddled in front seat, driver unknown

    Breaking distance into crumbs

    News of life, and of death

    From Paris to Amsterdam, no borders

    Only of the head – implanted when fingerprints were scanned,

    implanted to make fear out of wind

    This body, this new cartography

    Retracing, erasing, replacing 

    It is deconstruction, not destruction 

    Restitution, not prostitution 


    Feet in the most unlikely places

    Pillows of sidewalk pavement

    Stench of lives lived in the open

    Trembling fingers in baby winter

    Eyes struggle under sleep's weight

    The voice rings again: Daddy I miss you too

    I knew I would write this poem one more time. 

     This body, this new cartography.


    Amsterdam - Paris,


  • Night Ride (2)

    At the entrance of bus 43 towards Gare de l'Est

    Three ladies chatter 

    Blurbs of random events from the day's inventory. 

    Punctuated by dreams of a not-too-distant future

    they spoke in a familiar language, and accent and gesture

    They spoke of a day when they would have their ‘papers'

    Marry the man of their dreams, live the right life.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

    They spoke in a familiar language,

    The language of a sojourner –

    whose fate is to make homes they would never take with them. 

  • Brown Muffin Morning (Rainbow Black)

    Cold as depths of earth

    Deep blue skies above

    In between, hazy dreams

    Wherein I watched my father mix-bath with strangers of many faces. 

    Even I received a Medal of Honor, for being the only one watching

    1971, on the wall,

    From whence a line is drawn 

    What, and for what?


    Here, I am clutching a long plastic mug

    of black coffee, made from beans 

    From a certain far-flung place –

    From whence a line was drawn 

    Slow down. Breathe. No panic

    Don't let life take the music out of you

    It's a rhythm, you will need more funk than prayers. 


    Brown muffin morning it is

    Again in the middle of nowhere, where 

    This tropical Self does me no good. 

    I must seek another, or perhaps shed a skin

    For underneath my black is a rainbow. 

    I am rainbow black, and son of my father.  

  • Sixteen Bars a Day

    Fingertips touching all others 

    Eyes focused on thin air 

    Tick tock, tick tock, tick.Tock

    Breathe. Pause. Check pulse. 

    This silence, struggling with the weight of 

    Voices, of myriad frequencies

    Yet, I wait –


    Counting the countlessness of self-delusion 

    Seeking a hand to wrench me from the cage of time

    I walk with head turned to the back: First, to watch my back.  

    Then, to relish a stockpile of "good old days" 

    When the hangman was identifiable, even to the blind

    It's a new day, and already, it is barren of resolve 

    The road stretches interminably, along with the bodies it carries,

    tearing them in pieces, and scattered across fields, deserts, oceans

    No end in sight. 

    This silence is violence, 

    forged in the crucibles of marginalized, discarded, forgettable souls

    Wherein they are melted into a big lump of hot metal from which swords, guns, and bombs are made — sold, resold, re-melted. Recycled


    Fingertips touching all others

    For signs of life in numbness, and a constant battle between 

    Cold and warm, as earth sheds its skin, layers after layers —

    Along with her futures. 

    To live is to live now

    To live is to break the siege of time. 

    Pause. Breathe. Check pulse. 

  • A Father's Prayer

    You have blossomed gracefully
    Much of this time I was away

    Though never abscent
    This chord that is the core of our bond
    Has kept me fettered
    Fed me strength upon strength
    And got me redeemed day after day
    I will kill my sorrows for you to be
    I will steal time from my sleep to keep you breathing
    I will work from field to field to weave paths for you
    For every smile of yours, I will plant a seed in a corner of the world 

    Amsterdam, 29.03.2016