Tuesday, April 5, 2011

NaPo 4 - To The HOA

So, I posted this yesterday, but I messed up when I was trying to edit it and accidentally deleted it. So, here it is again!


I was feeling really fucking political. Sort of inspired by a restaurant I went to today, but last year, my neighborhood's HOA wanted to tear down the basketball court so the minority kids wouldn't play there anymore.


Acapulco, Mexico

People jump off cliffs here, and trust
the ocean to catch them.

She’s sitting in front of her house, staring
out into the streets full of people
riding in the backs of trucks, walking
barefoot down the sidewalks, and it’s
just so foreign to me, can’t imagine
a life of windows without glass, homes
without doors, and neighborhoods
without gates.

I went to dinner today to a small corner Middle Eastern
restaurant, and everyone there knew a language
I couldn’t even name; never in my life
had I felt so white, so un-tattered by reality
that I couldn’t even fathom the life
of my neighbors, of these people who
come every summer to my pool
after playing basketball at a court
that only they use - I seldom see
kids play ‘til they have no sweat left,
at least, not the ones that look like me,

but I have to turn these kids away
because they don’t have a key.

Why are we so trained by doors
that we can be so sure of who to let in
and keep out anymore? The world’s so full
of gates and all I see are plastic white fences,
black iron stakes, and none of it seems right.

Ever since I moved into those doors
those kids have been playing on that court; I’ve seen
them grow into something you wouldn’t
expect, living here, I’ve seen them grow
into people who just want to play themselves
out of poverty, but I can see your noses wrinkle
with the idea of their sweat, but I’ve seen people
revel in it, walk shirtless into the streets with it,
breathe in every cool breeze and know what it’s worth -

I’ve seen them scream into the rain, suck the Earth
into their lungs and let it out again. They breathe
the life they’re in and all I can see you do is
swallow humanity for the sake of
cleanliness, and for fuck’s sake,
who gives a fuck
about cleanliness, who gives a fuck
if they scream, and who gives a fuck
if they swear, and who gives a fuck
if they sweat onto the pavement -
it’s clear just like yours, and we’re all full of
rain drops we need to give back to the earth -

the summer’s hot, in Mexico and in the
closed, covenant community of Alton Park.

Some people can trust the ocean - there’s no fence between
those cliffs and that sea,

but sitting in that pool,
sitting in the restaurant,
sitting in that tour bus
going down the streets of Acapulco

all I can feel are walls between


and me.

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