Monday, May 4, 2009


Omar Moreno

The words of Lincoln in a letter
to a mother in Boston, heartbroken
over her lost sons is what I think of
When the projects have their latest casualty.
I say this as if this were Iraq or Afghanistan,
a lonely field in Gettysburg,
in defense of democracy, but no.

I have lived here, a place like this,
for my whole life. To me,
a shooting should be a shooting,
nothing akin to the Revolutionary War,
(no fanciful calligraphy telling King George,
thanks but no thanks) but a massacre.

You see, I jump into books a great deal,
A literary ostrich and the helicopters
are from a world that is not my own.

The boy is shot running from the
Police. His wounds exit from his visage.
I know his little sister, whose heart
Was empty before her brother left,
Who knew that mine was empty as well.
She asked me to dance at a Valentine's Party.

The people from the projects,
the neighborhood, march to say
this occupation is enough.
Their way of saying Thanks but No thanks
to the bed of nails, the different King Georges
across the country. I like their lack of Metaphor,
how a shower of Rose petals is not
the real way a person dies.

My perch on a stack of books
is how I see the world.
Trying to describe a death
and assuage the eventual grief of
People I know. Words Lincoln deemed fruitless.
A leaf against a wave
of water is who I am.
Leaves against a wave of stones
is how his family feels.