An embodiment of
is raging in
our neighborhood bar:
crude, loud, a stranger to the regulars,
and big enough to ensure
no one will confront him.
That Word No Polite White Person Will Utter Anymore
is being uttered,
uttered a lot,
most of the patrons seem to be correctly
uncomfortable with the sound,
if not the word. That shouldn’t
be said. Keep it to yourself.
It was a cold night but
although it’s January
it’s warming weirdly, heading
toward way above normal;
in here this guy’s street face
is tearing open, his cave bones
are showing, and maybe it’s the heat,
maybe the humidity (they say
it’s going to rain buckets
starting tomorrow), but it feels like
the seasons are moving too fast.
Ugly is sprouting in places
we thought were long ago
made presentable or at least
safe for our idea of ourselves.
All we wanted was our drink
in our quiet bar, and here’s everything
we’re here to forget about enabled — unkempt
and raw, brimful of embarrassing life —
That shouldn’t be said. Keep it to yourself.