Kerosene

after the L.A. riot,
April 1992

In my country pp the weather
it's not too good pp At every bus stop anger
holds her umbrella folded her
face buckled tight as a boot ppp Along the avenues
beneath parked cars spent
cartridges glimmer pp A man's head crushed
by nightsticks ppp smoke still
slides from his mouth pp Let out wearing

uniforms ppp hyenas rove in packs
unmuzzled and brothers strain inside
their brown skins pp like something wounded
thrown into a lake p Slowly
like blood filling
cracks in the street slowly pp the
President pp arrived pppp his mouth
slit into his face p Like candles seen
through thick curtains pp sometimes
at night pppp the dark citizens
occur to him

like fishing lamps along
the black shore of a lake ppp like moths
soaked in kerosene pp and lit


From HURDY-GURDY (Cleveland State University, 1992)

 

Poems by Tim Seibles

Each Letter

Kerosene

The Caps on Backward