A SHORT TRIP
"Won't this war make poets of us all?."
TEXT AND IMAGE BY
XXAVIER EDWARD CARTER
***A Short Trip Around The Sun*** Hearsay. * Maybe they didn't know better. * Bold and beautiful, Them. * Repeating the mantra that substance couldn't come from anywhere but esoteric musings. * Working around the words, So. * This is my love poem, And I've said it before, Every poem is a love poem. * No holds barred, Unabashed. * Holding a fist full of flowers, Like a detonator. * Or a box of chocolates, Like the deceased. * Life takes all the turns of a metaphor. * You won't lose me across the ocean, Or forget me, Not in the loneliness fading. * Our romantic gestures, Frying food in the we, Ours, Together ours, Love. * This flight is a balanced thing, Falling in any fashion, Leaves marks. * Like in the young poem, I am uncollected, Without a doubt. * And all those notes are as a song, You keep singing to yourself, What bigger things will do. * To you, taking the coming days, neck wrenched from the night. * And the coming days, bigger things, stares twisting the sight of you, throwing high and falling. * Leaves. * Walking. * Pacing. *Recollecting. * “I am small and becoming significant,” Left, Still, High as I want to be, Flying. * The color of twelve hours, A difference of half a day, Remains in the future. * And I am never sad to say I love you. * Balancing my accounts at the end of time spent. * A part of all these dreams like the horse that takes me away. * Recurring vision, Charging headlong. * You hold my hand and I say it is okay, On our backs, The painted image of the years of our birth. * The tattooed smiles over old scars. * The exhaustion of walking up hill both ways to get to you. * Won't this war make poets of us all? The spider's web now casually trailing, Into my lungs, The poison passing into my stomach, My tongue still tingling. * The last story we told, Climbing up the wall under the dust of some beast. * Petrified. * Between its teeth the brittle bits of life mashed to left overs, This war won’t make us anything that we didn't want to become. * Heroes to some and to others the others that deserved. * That talking point, Fist raised, Feet planted, We saw it coming. * Heard the words like footsteps down an empty street. * Stained pavement with the ends of no metaphor, No device. * No, Life ends in a likeness to another. * Likeness, Repeated, Won't this war will make poets of us all? * Crying over the graves of countless friends, Reminiscing in ink and laments, Change rattling in our pockets, In cold sweats, All the poison gone to better things. * River against the, Riding he, In bows, The, Sky chose. * We, Draw straws and, Those, Short words. * Current, On the stage, By now. * Expecting, Practiced, And precisely, Drawn, Back, The coursing, Blood oath, Or, Omen, For the struggle, We have always, Faced. * However, Might, A coward, Wash hands, In this font, While, I, Took you, To a place, A state. * Like beings, Thought, Clever, Cleaving, Prophecy, From the origins, Of surviving. * We hit, Each other, Avoiding vital organs. * Mornings, These are my tears, Floating, Defenseless. * Life has been less joy, More fights, Released whispers, Will be. * More nights in holy arms, Rising flame light, Blue, The why so true. * When our faces, Came to face one another. * Don’t leave me again, Let me go, With you, Back home, And have more days. * Pissing into a cup, Drawing blood, Diagnostic evaluations, Dying on the couch, Mosquito bites, Bits of black magic, Itchy dick, Split infinitive, To casually fuck your life up, To easily eat the cake, Cut little pieces out of the tape, Tie one on, Taking another hit, Taking another hit, Taking another hit. * I can feel it, Working up to another evening, Breathing, Some days I don't want to, Roll over, Say god damn, It is never going to change. * Around this place, Fire crackers, Forgetting what the police sound like. * Stinging, Nesting. * Now infesting, Now detesting, Now arresting, The blonde in the wrong neighborhood. * My love is just a memory, Slipping the bonds of what used to be, Like a life sentence turned death. * Deaf corners, Mouth tame, Covered, Sheets, Of this memory, Controlled. * No time like the wasted, Blank faced and severe. * Here is your card. * In threes, Or twos, You choose. * I am the blues, Less limber, Splendor of America's War. * Poor and priceless, Life, This, As I've said it before, Goes on. * Some like the difference, Made up from first attempts. * She is the third of a generation, The first were fighters, The next, Lovers, And she is liquid, Like the delta. * A legend, Swimming, Proud, Blade, And cutting. * Spade, The earth, Laid, No lie, Or other things, The ghost of a boy, Or a flower, Or a fire. * They’re claws and feathers, Wood grains, Worms, Bore holes, Like eyes, Gouged in a battle. * In her there is light, Becoming air, Blowing, Through the city. * Windy, Endless, In the pursuit of her beauty, Consuming and true. * Maybe in the falls, Apart, There will be a kind of cold, That brings us close together, That your face will line, The inside of walls, And cover books, In memory of, Living symbols for love. * The alphabet of luxury, The more beautifully rendered reality, A causality bound in the sweetest skin, Scent of trees and salt, Blood and sweat, The sweet, Drifting narrative. * This is the story of us, Through cosmic, Shift, And nights lit like the sun in the colors of the ocean. See, Brilliant, Restless, And moving, Glow of that distant star? Body, Gravity. * Gracing, Forms. * Long, But not forever. * Long, But not forever. * Remembering, Gone, But not for never, And all, Most forget. * Some fail, Most fall, And others, Being like the wind, Bow, Catching, Grace, Like smoke, The flaming sword, Burning, The hunter's teeth and black nights, Have no fear. * What do you do in a city, Still swallowing the oppression, Living is a constant battle, And aggression, Even when it feels right it is just another lesson to be learned? *Like the phrase wait your turn, And in turn, You burn, The face off another project. * Like a mole, Never saw a black panther in the wild, And my child will never know the smile of their great grandmother’s face in person. *At any rate. * Pennies dispersed in a fountain, And it may be bad luck but I'm counting on what isn't mine, Wishing that the crime wave will stop, And the revolution start. * Say to her, “I'm feeling more present when I look out my window and see the wind blow what is left of the past.” * Sulfur yellow, The sunset, And apartheid, In the park, After dark waiting on a murderer, Take me away, And you have never heard her screams from a nightmare, Or dreams of the night air at its coldest, The boldest color you can imagine, Bruised fists and facing the concrete, They beat that boy to death the other night, And it won’t be the last, This evening will pass like all the others for a few looking for it, To reverberate, The walls shake with the names of street corner crimes and ally way white outs, Screaming, “Let me out of these bones!” I want to see myself, However terrible. * And there is no answer to the question of the sky closing in, Orange lights, Like a cat’s grin, Eyes, Reflecting in, Mouth closed, Passing silence. * You don’t approach the corpse head on because you know the body. * Swinging, Was your friend, And, Trying to pretend now that grieving is what you have in mind for the dead, Looking in the face of a limousine driver from the outside. * Outside this moving ship is water and even the land is wet, Lest we forget the blood it is soaked in. * I was a token, Mostly clay, Aged in a pocket, Turning colors, The rust of my blood seeping through my skin. * Flippant. * What are we doing here if not helping each other spin some gold from loose change? Hammering in where you began doubting that the mirror was giving you the straight dope, What your eyes saw was rope, Port holes, Eyes starboard, To be continued, Through the portal. * Walking through, The same time you can’t unsee what you’ve seen, Can just convince yourself otherwise, However unreal you do not apologize for the anger of your fight, Not watching the petals fall from the lone tree walking past, Walking past and everything gets a little colder when you are around. * I want to talk about erasure, About the blank faces, Looking over my shoulder, You will notice me, Looking at you, From all of history, Maybe the divine or maybe the other thing but looking at you, Broken, Painted, Floating, Raised, Figure of a question, The burning question, The branded question, The banded question. * Rings this world cannot fully explain, Word constructed on fragments, Really, Piles, Pillars of civilization, Here but not, Hear but not the voice. * What echoes through your picture, As time moves I became, From nowhere, As ours turns, Now here, But always, In piece, A figure, as earth shaped, Where. * I had a vision, One night, Late, Last night, Wait. * I had a vision. * I had a vision. * It was clear enough, It was here. * Enough, Enough, Enough, I had a vision, And I can see it clearly. * “Whistle.” * Baraka, Black marching, Laying the paper in rows, Self-immolating inside of a box, Of memories. * Galvanizing, Hot, House fires, Trying to transform dirt. Baking, Mud pies. * My eyes glistening, The 24 hours of a lock in, Looking out for the police, Polite, Paper the floor and walls. * Walls made of brush, Stroking, Hollow, Whistle, Another sleepless night. * The days shortening in rapid succession. * Conceiving, Ill, Will. * Inhaling a lung full of burning ash, Cans of paint, Watered down, The wind over oak trees. * Bringing, Red backs, Heads black and tails. * In trails, The frozen look of panic met with the realization that you can fail, You can die, You can succeed in scrubbing the dirt from under your nails, Pull those pieces from the fire with gloved hands, Etch on your flesh the new bones, Exposed. * You haven't seen, Have you, You haven't been, Have you, I do not dream, Anymore, These are more appeals from ghosts, Sitting in fire. * The walls closing in, Thin, A paper memory, In case of blood, Smeared, In rows, Between the trees, Carving, Our names are devoured, The walls holding. * This grave is a courtesy, The life less remembered, A blessing bestowed by better men, Some brothers, Like the kind that fuck bitches and get money, Found it funny enough for you to try and change. * The picture of a killer turned preacher, Like it still isn't killing you, Like the miracle did you wrong, The dream still moist after the flames were retarded, Skin marks actual, The stretching of long tongues, Down our throats, Enough to say, Nay. * Point. Over there seems like a good place, Made a case just for you, A womb to hold you in your new life, The life less remembered, Less lucky, A tomb like the rest of them, Less ugly, But still one of them, Won’t let you go, Less a memory than a make up for what should have been. * Shall we pretend, Just one more time, Say a few more words, Where the body lies, Less a memory than a mile on the road. * Washed the light away and the stone stood unchanged, Bones grew, The frame of a prayer, Like a life that wanted to hold onto time, Just a little longer, A lover caught under foot, The look in the eyes of eternity, Another book left open to a page you can’t read. * Always moving, We are always becoming, Closer. * We, In all ways, The distant, International. * Un. * Connected, We are part. * Ing. * The realization of the act, Surrounded by the act, In body, As they say our souls are else. * Or else, Our soles, The else. * I want to smell like a forest, Full of dead trees, Fallen by time, As if nature had a want, To see the coast again, And started the push to take back the gaze, Over broken limbs, And the land sliding, With a sound like polyphony, Blown from the other side, Of the graven image of fire etched into the skin, Lightning, In the morning fog. * Every once in a while, A daredevil dies, Defying death.***