Vietnamese grandpas

as a child by the river i’d sit
watching birds and tin cans
faded reds with silver coca cola brand
the Vietnamese grandpas were fishing

for hours studying the leaves
grownups  brawling and guzzling their beer
speaking of politics and the cost of living
the Vietnamese grandpas were fishing

and my innocence of mind would cause a wonder
did the birds have veins like my tree leaves had tucked away between the feathers on their wings
the Vietnamese grandpas were fishing

and when the time came to leave my clan i headed to a school
and i studied nature in a most unnatural of states
when i began to see it all the universe like the light of day
the leaves the birds the skies stars and twigs
they all had veins like the ones i saw
as i received smiling foreign words pats on head and soda cans
down by that river bed
from the Vietnamese grandpas who were fishing

cup o soup

the chill condenses
as when porridge does
and the tips of my fingers
begin to ache as if to crack
like when i used to pour vodka
on the giant designer ice cube
since i was little i liked corners
memories of life and how its come to be but hasn’t changed me
at an angle framed by brick weeds and piss the King Eddy has closed
window and door a silent rigor mortis
no more free drinks or musty teamster gropes
skid row catches the eye
twilight lives here day or night
but at times it shimmers
like when a man sings a new song
like when i can afford
to tip him five dollars
i like the twilight i feel
and when she staggers to me
and tells me her story
i think that all of us here are missing some teeth
that justice is served
that in this twilight here
Lennon’s imagination
is clear
we are all important because of our story
our statistics aren’t of value
in the twilight of these years
we are one
and we can all use a cup o soup

ok class

for today’s lesson

look in the mirror

and praise your spirit

in math class figure out how many smiles it takes to get you through the day

in philosophy ask not where did our giants go wrong but how can we usher their wisdom to the promised land and have them witness you building their home

in logic it goes without saying fight for your right to think for yourself otherwise no one will ever be free

in ethics and religion agree to disagree knowing that there is no perfection in humanity

and in politics the new world order is to be debated and cut open so tell me what you really see can AI really be the savior that they say it is

and when you’ve reached your elective class use art to create the hate and pain away

and after all your work is done class will be dismissed

so run out to the playing field and level it out with love and lots of elbow grease