benefits blues

ah’m unemployed at Christmasbenefits-blues
mah pockets gots no bucks
jobless at Christmas
man, dis really sucks
every day I struggle
not to cry
when ah thinks of all da presents
ah cain’t afford ta buy

ah’m outa work
for da holidays
ah tell mahself
dis is jes’ a phase
ah been on countless
interviews
ain’t got hired yet
so ah got da blues

hadda go on the dole
fo’ dis festive season
‘n right now mah life
got no rhyme or reason
bein’ unemployed at Christmas
ain’t no fun
but ah take comfort from da fact
dat ah’m not da only one

ah may be outa work for now
mah self-esteem may be shot
but dis shit won’t last forevuh –
ah know dis ain’t my lot
cuz soon da Lord will bless me
wit dat “you been hired” letter
& 2017 will be so much better

copyright © 2016 KPM

 

angels in mah house

dark of eyes
an’ dark of face
six angels smile
from dey customary place

dearly do ah love
this long ago Christmas gift
six tiny angels
dey always give mah soul a lift

asexual dey are
neither girl nor boy
but dey gender matters not
for dey presence brings me joy

two angels clutch dey hymnals
eyes raised toward da sky
obedient little tots
wit God’s will dey do comply

da other angels make heavenly music:
wit cello, accordion, trumpet & flute
such sounds ah’ve never heard
so lovely ah’m rendered mute

but da angel ah love da most
is da cellist, who also sings
fo’ dis is a fallen angel
you can tell by da broken wings

copyright © 2012-2014 KPM
SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA

neutral territory

been in one battle o’ anothuh
fo’ mos’ o’ mah adult life
an’ Jesus knows I’se tired
o’ all dis bullshit strife

dunno why some folks get happy
from spewin’ bile ‘n blight
but ah cain’t get down with dat –
all ah wanna do is write

everyone has dey problems
dey got hopes ‘n dreams ‘n fears
we all got dat in common
no need ta cause each other tears

mebbe ah’m too idealistic
thinkin’ we all had a future bright
ah kin only speak fo’ me –
‘n all ah wanna do is write

copyright © 2014 KPM

neutral territory

when she wuz two

when ah leave da room
fo’ a much-needed pee
a little voice comes through da door:
“aunty kaffie, come get me!”
 
when ah boot up mah laptop
to write a poem or two
a tiny voice demands:
“aunty kaffie, whut you do?”
 
when ah let slip a swear word
a mild one like ‘dayum’ or ‘hell”
da little voice bursts into giggles:
“aunty kaffie, ah’m a tell!”
 
whut when where
how why who
baby gurl is fulla questions
ah’m exhausted thru ‘n thru!
 
copyright © 2014 KPM

Modelling the earrings from Auntie Kaffie

(sub)urban nightmares

hell is bein’ forced to see
dat which causes misery:
     racks o’ new clothes
     dat ya got no money ta buy
     handcuffs on yo’ man
     cain’t do shit but wave – bye bye
     heavy snowfall
     when yo’ landlord’s cut off da heat
     a baby boy in raggedy shoes
     too small fo’ his growin’ feet
     folks comin’ out de grocery store
     when you ain’t et in 10 days or more
     da banker dat denies yo’ loan
     dere goes da house you’ll nevuh own

hell is bein’ forced to see
other folkses misery:
     strung-out hos on corners
     endless homeless faces
     unemployed peoples
     wit’ sad defeated faces
     no pre-natal vitamins
     for dat baby in yo’ womb
     got no health insurance at all?
     bettuh start savin’ fo’ dat tomb
     men whut live in boxes
     asleep in fetal positions
     ‘n others dat you know
     strugglin’ ta survive in awful conditions

hell is when ya realize dat don’ nobody care
hell is da fear dat you could end up dere

copyright © 2014 KPM

(sub)urban nightmares

 

de promised land

you laugh too loud
you smoke too much
& wit’ yo nasty walk & such
you kin fuhget about de promised land
you’ll nevuh reach de promised land

yo’ head is hard
yo’ temper’s quick
yo’ dirty jokes jes’ make me sick
you can fuhget about de promised land
you ain’t gone see de promised land

“what ah do makes me happy,
& this you’d begrudge?
when did Gawd die & make you mah judge?
all ah’ve done, all ah have
was done by mah hand,
right now ah’m in de promised land
ah am in de promised land.”

you talk too much
yo’ words are brash
& yo’ deeds ill-thought & rash
you can fuhget about de promised land
you’ll never make it to de promised land

you foreswore yo’ father
you neglect yo’ mother
you deny yo’ sistah & brotha
you can fuhget about de promised land
you ain’t wanted in de promised land

“how ah live
is mah own affair.
for yo’ words
ah have no care,
cause ah’m livin’ in de promised land
ah’m already in de promised land.”

you drink too much
& yo’ friends smoke weed
fo’ others’ thoughts you have no need
you can fuhget about de promised land
you ain’t fit fo’ de promised land

yo’ only concern is
yo’ wants, yo’ goals
& you pursue both at da cost of yo’ soul
you can fuhget about de promised land
you don’t belong in de promised land

“if narrow-minded folks
like you kin get in,
den ah’m better off
wit whut you call sin.
ah’ll make my own promised land,
ah’ll make my own promised land.”

copyright © 2007-2014 KPM

de promised land pic

3:40

in da record shop
is where ah wait
chillin’ wit Ricky
near da heatin’ grate
illuminated by
a florescent light
on a cold C-town
winter night
ah’m doin’ what
ah always do:
sittin’ here waitin’ fo’ you
waitin’ waitin’ fo’ you

ah’m trippin’out
on Ricky’s dirty hair
as discordant music
fouls da air
playin’ Tempest,
a borin’ arcade game
while Ricky cracks
his jokes so lame
an’ ah’m doin’ what
ah always do:
sittin’ here waitin’ fo’ you
waitin’ waitin’ fo’ you

Ricky acks me
do ah want some crack
an’ ah say
“naw, my old man’ll be back”
so he goes on an’
fires up dat pipe
its smelly smoke
makes a thin white stripe
meanwhile ah’m doin’ what
ah always do:
sittin’ here waitin’ fo’ you
jes’ waitin’ waitin’ fo’ you

at long las’ yo’ ass
breezes thru da door
yo’ imitation Timbalands
pissin’ snow on da floor
kissin’ me ‘fore you drag me
outa da shop
an’ Ricky yells “y’all wait up!”
but we don’ stop
cuz ah’m done doin’ what
ah always do:
sittin’ ‘round waitin’ fo’ you
waitin’ waitin’ fo’ you

copyright © 2010-2014 KPM

340 pic

dwellin’ in da house of da Lord

so ah’m dwellin’ in da house of da Lord
an’ its way more expensive ‘n anythin’ ah kin afford
cuz Gawd likes ta crack dat whip
a lotta stuff from you He’ll ask
but I’se weak – I’se jes’ a sinner
ain’t shore I’se up to dis task

yeah, ah’m dwellin’ in da house of da Lord
where mah alarm system consists of Gabriel’s sword
Gawd needs ta be da only love
an’ He’ll take care o’ all yo’ wants
if you’ll jes’ break free
from yo’ past an’ all its haunts

praise Jesus, now ah live I da house of da Lord
where deep in mah soul ah kin feel Mercy’s chord
ah’m a child o’ Gawd now –
no longer will ah chafe
from hell’s temptation,
ah’m forever safe

copyright © 2014 KPM

houseofdalord pic