Monday, February 28, 2011

poem of the day 02.28.11

the grand dame of section 8

she’s wearing a regal emerald house coat
make-up slathered on her face
crooked glasses
her breath smells of onions
and she will only deal with me
because she says that i make her
feel comfortable

she walks around this place
carrying at stack of police reports
that she has to collate
because she’s having problems
with her neighbor
a young lady of about twenty-five
boombox noise at all hours
men coming in and out of her apartment

she puts the stack of police reports down
says that she has to be careful with them
afraid of retribution
you know, she says, how they can be
mouths “blacks”
before picking the stack up
and going through it like a shaking junky

she says it’s so hard to find somewhere
to use a computer these days
to print up more of these reports
because she has many more of these reports
the mexicans have taken over the internet café
on avenue x
they’re not bad
but they’re always screaming to their relatives
from across the room

it seems the chinese have taken over
everywhere else, she says
or the russians
she’d really like to get out of her section 8 housing
because it’s filling up with hispanics
they’re mixing it up with the blacks
and the boombox music is terrible

but there’s nowhere for her to go
except down to coney island to live
with all of the russians
and the last thing you want to do is live
with the russians
you might as well go on living with
the “blacks” she mouths again

she waits for me to empathize with her
but, shit, we all have problems
i have guitar music coming through
my walls
and televisions humming
neighbors beating their dogs in front
of my living room window
i have lived amongst the “blacks”
the hispanics, the whites, the chinese,
the mexicans, the arabs, and the russians
and have found everyone to be unfavorable
most of the time

she shakes her police reports at me
tells me to wish her good luck
i say nothing and smile
think about onion soup
and how long it will be
before i see another day off from this place.


Issa's Untidy Hut said...

You know, I swear this woman takes the bus back and forth between our libraries ...

John Grochalski said...

maybe they're cousins. one of the daily pleasures of being a public servant.