Watching David Oyelowo’s portrayal in this year’s picture Selma, you can’t help but feel a movement within yourself. I compare the sensation to the way water boils on top of a charcoal stove. One minute its cool and the next, hot bubbles are rising and jumping out of the pan. That is Oyelowo’s delivery of Martin Luther King – Alive.
I have a recurring dream about you. I’m leaving work, a hard manual 9 to 5, which actually finishes at 8.
I can tell because its dark out and I’m rushing to catch the last train. On an empty platform I sit and wait, petrified its all too late.
I swear its these damn safety shoes like automatic brakes, part of the scheme to prolong this greasy affair.
I look up at the moon and I think of you, knife shining in hand. Sitting on our kitchen table in soft light
Straddled in someone else’s arms.
The train slithers in and I cut its doors open. Ill be damned if im too late…
Failed by tedious days, ugly boots and late trains.
At this point of the dream, I burst through the front door.
The air up here is still and nothing stirs in the distance. It’s probably due to the fact that I, like many sit in an insignificant box within a box in the sky where crickets are nowhere to make a sound, way above the trees where birds don’t fly,
Not among the clouds but you can sure see for miles. Where the only visitor is the wind but on days like this it’s quiet and lonely. Its detached really is what it is, well except for those on my side and above and below and opposite, not to forget the many inside.
Its Saturday again and the lucid curtains are shabby. Torn stitches, no good are they. Shabby curtains, shabby world. Looking at you is loneliness. I tell you this and you tell me you’ve been dreaming. Dreaming of winter. Red flesh eating; cold, cold city, cold streets. Through the facade of the bright white crisp morning, you can see pools of darkness in their homes. Cold people, cold hearts. You turn to the empty street…mounts of snow untouched. Using orange pools of lamp light we look down at threads of yellow line. You say you are searching for yours, it will guide you home. Today its cold weather, cold streets, cold hearts, we too are cold. You say you have to go, I wave goodbye as you follow your line and quietly disappear in a fog.
At first the thought of it frightened me to tears. I had been castoff and this is where I was running to hide.
A sharp realisation “this was my last resort” – a quiet excuse, a snail beaten in recoil into its shell
We ride home, our memories dancing in the rear view mirror. Yellow planets swimming in warm air from the shafts. Twinkling eyes and smiling teeth serenading to nighttime radio.
Do you remember? the twenty-first naaaaaaaight of September, twistin n tuuuuurning their temper, crossing the line again
Mischief blinks from the vein above your right eye You interlude the back seat chorus, ready hands, let’s play, I’m still game
Name the band else I lower the windows. Dear God, when did we become those people? Sedated, dim lit, It’s too late, Earth Wind and Fire!
Sparks. You reel me by the wrist. I spy ahhhh mosquito, clap! Now shift, side to side
Until we have made full circle. You look to me as if to say, I remember Light years ahead of late nights, fogged out windows. It hurts but they might be right. One kisses you, made you look, made you laugh
“You know, the thing about me is…”
She hated that phrase, wanted, needed to pull it out of her acquaintances mouth, fast, like a string from an over played cassette, scrunch it up and step on it, pick it up again and shred it, burn the darn strips of nonsense to ash and let it blow into the accommodating wind, swept away like it had never been brought forth.
She just couldn’t stand it, that syntax of words and their doubtful sound.
She gazed on. She had become an expert at holding back the bad taste of vex in her throat, so much so she looked bemused.
A chameleon in the situation to throw off the tide of an arising tongue of sarcasm “Yes tell me, what is…. the thing about you?” – smirk!
But, she held her silence. The words she hated continued as follows “Im a very patient guy, I won’t push you to do anything you don’t want to” smile.
She smiled back and swept air into her chest. This shit again.