I won’t smile

A neon sign, spelling out the words "say cheese" because it's an appropriate way to tell people to put on a fake smile.
Photo by Wyron A on Unsplash
I will not smile for smiling's sake
if there's nothing to smile about,
I do not care if in my wake
are lots of people walking out,
I will not smile to ease your pain,
your pain should be by you addressed,

If I'm sad I tend to cry
and I sweat when I am stressed,

I take to me reality,
not woo that I will manifest,
I do not scratch where there's no itch,
I do not laugh at corniness,
I don't look at the posts online
and agree because it's a trend
and find agreements echo most
among the fakes that some call friends,

I might laugh at your disrespect,
but not because you told a joke,
but that you have a clown effect
and so my humor's been provoked,

I'd rather hear a good sad song
than empty, bubbly, chorus lines,
but every creature is born free
so, if you're stupid, I'll be fine,

I alienate by saying my truth,
a truth that's not in you instilled
so I lay dusty on the shelf
an effective but bitter pill,

have a gummy sugar coated,
wake up feeling pained and bloated,
cure it all with ancient chants,
not so quiet, be full throated,
buy rose quartz and amethyst
and wonder why your health's eroded,
keep playing at spiritist
clutch the charm that you have kissed,
with the saints we do not play,
mocking spirits do exist,
talk to them if you insist,

but far away from me.

The restaurant is closed

A menu someone is looking at... forever
Photo by Amanda Vick on Unsplash
If I'm rejected, why surprised I leave,
When I'm neglected, that I fill the void,
If you killed it, why then should I grieve,
it's natural, when insulted, I'm annoyed,
so low am I that I won't sit and wait
for you to stroke your chin, to hmm and ha,
My grave will come while you deliberate
a mile long beard would grow upon my jaw,
I won't persuade nor engage in debate,
Plus hesitate to me equals a no,
less honorable to whimper at the gate,
I think I'd better take my things and go.
The menu sits for years beneath your nose,
Stay choosy but the restaurant is closed.

A prism held to my flame

A prism, which divides light into the spectrum
Photo by Sasha • Stories on Unsplash
Some mornings I wake up with my eyes red,
pressed like orange juice and likewise strained
(when the yellow liquid's gone you're dead,
a green dumpster will carry your remains)
Sometimes, when you're picked from out the blue,
you feel a royal wrapped in indigo,
Plucked, like you're a violet when it's new,
when you're withered, out the vase you go,
If I'm chosen, I don't really care,
in the cabinet must my hand reach
get the eyedrops, clear my eyes and stare
past others' discernment so my speech 
is light that's not through flattery inspired,
sourced instead from my internal fire.

Constancy of thought

Locks on a gate, symbolizing a strong love
Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash
1. When friends and lovers walk with you
to run when battles come,
when bridges only hold you up
when you're a scrawny one,
Why bother? It's better 
to walk the earth alone,
Best get on a raft and
wish all the weak begone.

2. If you should get a confidant,
that blabs when you fall out,
If you put money in the bank,
but can't take money out,
you better be quiet
around the chatterbox,
Invest in a safe and
purchase a couple locks.

3. More prized than wealth and jewelry is
some constancy of thought,
not like fresh meat exposed to heat
that in a second rots,
but more like good seeds dug
into the fertile ground,
that with years an orchard
can in that place be found.

Anyone can strike back

Man pulls back rubber band held by outstretched hands
Photo by Amirr Zolfaqari on Unsplash

Sometimes you're around people quick to yell
as though you were their child (of course, you're not),
They see your brow and still they cannot tell
how you capable of yelling you have got,
they punch, not thinking you can take a swing,
when bruised, they are confused, as though it were
your place to take the knocks from a born king
and not a consequence for them's deserved,
the frail can under duress  strike a blow,
the lame can swing a cane and bust a lip,
a coward only needs a chance to show
the moment's his though he is not equipped,
but barrel-chested fools on earth abound
for lanky men to bury in the ground.

The adequate, the pure AKA Let me be me

Snowy mountains, with bare parts peeking through
Photo by Norris Niman on Unsplash
I'm known to be the cocky type
and I concede that, sure,
but, being me, I'm certainly
the adequate, the pure.

Some argue I'm the prickly type,
some say I'm immature,
despite what other people say,
I'm adequate, I'm pure.

It's not to do with past mistakes,
for who's committed none?
Nor that I'm skilled (for every beast
there is a bigger one),
but who's to say which person's core
is formed from the divine?
I've yet to find the living saint
who is so qualified,
The pundits and the pastors preach
to purge me of my sin,
the drug stores try to sell me bleach
to lighten up my skin,
my casual speech is corrected
by folks illiterate,
and every woman, man, and enby
tries to change my fate.

Famous or obscure,
I'm adequate. I'm pure.
middling, rich, or poor,
I'm adequate, I'm pure,
Lively or demure,
I'm adequate, I'm pure,
In Rome or in Darfur

This title is going to have more than one word because I love R&B and this isn’t R&B.

Neon Sign: No Music, No life
Photo by Simon Noh on Unsplash
If I had a boombox it would blast
midnight all the way till afternoon,
I've been a noisy person from the womb
combing through the records till the last
minute, infinitely wearing buds,
humming, causing auditory pain,
a note, I am unable to sustain,
released some songs and all of them were duds.

The reader reads and I have read a lot,
I rarely write a proper word, but still
I sing to you, the two, the three, the five,
a show more intimate was never got,
but hopefully my readers are fulfilled,
posterity will hopefully forgive.

Woman in ornate red hat and beautiful clown makeup

A clown takes the stage. People Clap. They leave.

A clown performing, engaged,
controls the stage,
juggles with talent endowed
then wins the crowd,
Bows accepting applause
that they have caused
Leaves inside of a car
built for a dwarf.


Men serious
on a screen
brows furrowed.

Me laughing
in real life
eating pizza.

Men with guns
who're they robbing?

There's someone
at the door
should I get it?

Should I get it?
said the man 
with the pistol

pointed somehow
at my face
I don't get it.

Maybe suits
on TV
know of something

Maybe suits
on TV
have insurance

Because suits
on TV
aren't me.


If power's a given for those who have privilege
how greedy are they that they're seeking some more
it's as if they're lost in preserving their image,
I guess.

Then I don't care.

I don't think that having to worry about eating
is fair,

but otherwise

 on who else would zombies who roam in our cities 
have feast.
Please pass the salt.