Poetry & Prose

Mystic River: Part II

the next Wednesday,

I run down Boston Ave

with afro big



and as I look both ways

to cross the street

I see him hanging out of back window



our eyes may have met

him: blinded by hollers of hate



like when a man flies away at the moment of coming

me: darting, dizzy



all this,

in the spot where we had bounced boundless

at the curve of the river and the freeway



me and J, who said they were too queer for Massachusetts



after we had taken the small papers beneath our tongues

like orange tic tacs

after we had played under sun rays and poured the chemical paint

after the other boys hollered and did wheelies between our street and Dunkin’



in a trailer truck: Ladies for Trump



it’s been a few months now

I haven’t stopped running by that curve in the river

and Sunday morning jogs
(like the ones in mid-February during an “Indian summer”)

have found a way to remain

so sweet

but, sometimes

I tense



and TUPD has taken over all my smoke spots

like the docks at Mystic Lake

and the racists have tainted Mystic River

so, many evenings



I walk tense

with less places to watch the sunset

no blood circulation in my hands, and a strained neck

from watching my back



(hug your friends)

but I would like to think we could hug our strangers





  1. this was written after some boys shouted racist shit at me out their SUV window on Mystic Valley Parkway
  2. the aforementioned event occurred a week after Donald Trump was elected as President of the United States
  3. this was published after the Tufts administration approved the smoking ban

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