Welcome to
our homeland 
where all roads
lead to shops
that sell tinctures
of mist and mistake
in flint glass bottles,
formulas made
to be sipped
from silver spoons
long tarnished
with foreboding;
where every house
has a cute front door, 
sweet curb appeal,
and a back door 
to an alley, 
a one way street,
or a dead end; that door
is the only exit
once you’re inside;
to be certain of which
you are stepping onto,
read the signs —
how foot-beaten
does the pavement
appear to be, 
how far does it extend 
among these close built,
dim windowed fortresses; 
you’ll have to
walk it regardless
but good to know,
good to be forewarned; welcome
to our country
full of schooling
for jobs and careers,
shootings and padlocks,
for debts and 
mad sorcery
over the checkbook
once a month,
schooling for
holding patterns,
crossed fingers,
sweaty sheets,
the fevered terror 
of the wolf at the door,
the hijab in the coffeehouse,
the ghost bonfires
of noose and cross
still throwing heat;  welcome
to the place where, 
if you have to go there,
you go there —
they want you
to call it home
whether or not they
take you in; stay — 
you can always
be decorative
at the right time of
the year.


About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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