Not That Kid

Making gum wrapper chains
snap pop New York kid shuffle
innocence was a game
we never intended to play
it was always like blowing smoke
into the wind
choking on the fumes
brown paper bag huffing
the last boat has sailed
and it doesn’t matter any more
because the kid can’t swim anyway
and the Atlantic waters will chill to the bone
especially when you are floating – far far from home
and as the kid wanders and wonders
about all the cracks in the pavement
and the footsteps that slide and shuffle – late in the night
all she recalls is the pop pop pop
and the rattle of a snake
reminiscent of an old western 1950s flick
when only the bad guy wore black
and we all know the only snakes in the city
wear haute couture suits
carrying pens of gold to seal deals
that wreak havoc on the masses
and it doesn’t matter where you stand – or if you stand at all
the view is the same city by city
country by country
power hungry fat cats
belly protruding finger licking – scoping out the dessert tray
and when the fog doesn’t lift quick
and it gets too thick where they sleep
the pie in the sky top floor will flip
and shift from exclusive to tenement
and guess who is moving
where the air is clear and clean?
suddenly the eye level view
becomes a treasured source – of pride and privilege
certainly not the kid from the block
the kid that played Motown
and danced in the streets
falling in love with the boy from upstate
a first kiss slow dance warm hands
not the 2nd generation kid
whose eyes haven’t gentrified
turning brown into blue
or a name with too many letters
simplifying it to Joe or Sue
No, not that kid
Not that kid
The kid we all were
Or the kid we all knew…

© 2015 TrilbyYates

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