Thursday, 10 December 2009

opal palmer adisa

all this

living in oakland
i never know
when i leave my home
if i’ll return alive
i’m less valuable than gum
on the sidewalk that sticks to your shoes
three friends were killed this year
they weren’t into dope or gangs
and i saw my first dead person
when i looked down at ron
in his coffin i couldn’t move
i thought i would faint
felt like a piece of paper
being blown on the street
someone in the line nudged
me forward
afterwards several of us
drifted to the park
by school and i just cried and cried
none of it made sense
ron was the captain of our
soccer team
i might be dead tomorrow
or the next
but i want to live
i want to go to college
for ron
for myself
i want a chance
to fall in love
play soccer at college
travel to senegal or kenya
make a wish on the full moon
like my mother says
focus on staying alive
staying alive
stay alive

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