Luke Johnson

A Suburban Fall - Poem by Luke Johnson

I see the bloom of fall colors
this noon, with passing vagrants built
with nothing but poetry manuals and
smuggled balls in their pockets—

and they all come like Moses through
the desert in suburbia, through forest
of bubble gum and cigarette butts
and they neither smile nor cry, and
they do nothing but talk about apparitions
of their soul

And they reflect like sea glass wading in
muddy waters of oily old omnipotent rivers
of Christ tears dressed in black.
and the unity candle held by father time
likes to dismiss their intelligence with dollar
bills and they grab at him!

He howls like a heifer in heat!
He jumps around with fiery feet
made of Mexican flats and dried

And I see him led through their vortex
of the same amnesia that Negro children
and I turn my criticism into poetry
and I write like one of them will never do
(Because they smoke dope on the corners
next to boys pretending to be glorious water

and this is how the seasons change
they are like passing generations-
the colors overwhelm the diaphanous
American culture like southern California
And its impotent.

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Poem Submitted: Friday, December 11, 2009

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