Major Jackson

Born Under Punches

The deejay fingered a 12"
From a batch of milkcrates &
We were back inside the school
Gymnasium, catwalking between
Slowdrags & hipgrinds.

Skullcaps pulled below
Brows, Timberlands
Laced high, our fists swelled
Inside goose-down, metallic
Parkas. Spacemen

On the dancefloor!
Heavy-eyed, feral-faced,
We roamed till some
Boy's neck flashed
Links of gold.

When Big Jake threw
A suckerpunch, the boy
Fell like a swimmer
Giving up breathing. Lovers
Left each other's arms,

Backing away.
Someone's sister moaned
In the bleachers &
A heavy groove
Unlocked a flurry of fists.

In that darkness,
Speakers rose like
Moonlight diamonded
Mesh-wired glass.

What was it that bloomed
Around his curled
Body when the lights
Came up, fluorescent,
Vacant, garish?

The gym throbbed
With beats & rage
And his eyes darted
Like a man nailed
To a burning crucifix.


Two poems from Urban Renewal:  nbspii. // xii.

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