Wednesday, May 16, 2007


The first Harford County Youth Slam Festival!

May 19th
12:00 -3:00 p.m.
Bel Air High School
Admission is only $5
**Venue opens at 11:30

Come see the following high schools duke it out in a War of Words!
Bel Air
North Harford

As an added bonus, see the Nationally renowned slam poets Jamie Kilstein, Katie Wirsing and Andrea Gibson as they swing by on their East Coast tour.

DAY 28- 5/15

If animals could speak,
we would have no need for doctors.

A quick sniff
to the face has nothing to do
with what treat you had before to leaned down to pet them.

When the nostrils pulse inches
from your face
as you mind races with
urban legends of whole faces removed by
crazed canines,
they are not plotting fountains of blood
and tearing apart eyelids like chew toys.

Dogs can smell cancer in out breath.

And each time they hover inches from out open mouths,
they are trying to detect the possible death that
smells like toe nail polish or drain cleaner
on our tongues.

So I wonder how many urban legends would
be crushed if people knew this?

How many women would dangle their children
inches from razor sharp teeth
to breath a little easier?

DAY 27- 5/14

Last one… I think


Leave 30th Street Station with Starbucks
and head to the food truck operated by a white haired
Greek man with albino chinchillas for eyebrows, and a
wife that doesn’t speak English, unless it’s on the menu.
But she can cook a steak, egg, and cheese hoagie on a long roll
that would make Kate Moss want a second serving.

I see the beggar.
A duct-taped trashbag at his side.
The layers of clothing make him appear able to be peeled.
An onion of a man, who, the more you remove, the
more your eyes water.

My eldest uncle could have been him… if he had been unlucky.
They probably went to school together.
He’s probably somebody’s father…probably a Walter—
he looks like a Walter.
Cast aside like an annoying insect for his illness—
he shakes like a virgin at first touch…but he doesn’t stop—
then I notice the silver band on his wrist that binds him- a shackle stamped with three letters

Avoid contact, keeping my head low as if in prayer-
(Praying that he won’t see me)
and my hands in pockets, pressing my keys against my leg,
so that they won’t be confused with loose change.

“Spare any change,” he asks, as he extends a beaten Styrofoam 7-11 cup.

I walk on…

I order my food and my palette is revolted as I chew and swallow my recent actions.
I break into a run towards 30th street.
Sprinting—an admittance of guilt in Philly.

And I am guilty… Walter has been shooed away like a pigeon seeking crumbs—

DAY 26- 5/13- DAY OFF

At this point I was driving home from North Carolina on no sleep!

DAY 25- Post for 5/12

Oh, did I mention that I used to write a lot of poems about Philly?

Eli Price’s Fountain

Listening to the city, I perch myself
on my stand. Chained like Prometheus
by awe to this concrete geyser.

The city attacks me like an eagle,
yet sets me free with a swing of its sonic hammer:
John Henry—being of noise, static, music.

City spreads out before me
like an orchestra I conduct.

Steps of a million feet tap out a cadence for John’s blows
that lay rhythm out like the beat of a bass drum heart.

Bullets strike a snare roll while
Eli’s dream trickles out—a flute song.
The motion of the masses
staggers into a cello’s moan.

The orchestra shifts to my right
to an R&B song as a white-haired
black man sings with all the passion
of a gospel choir after it has made love to a swinging jazz band.

The singer silenced…
A siren breaks ht tempo
like a bottle of Boone’s on a brick wall.

And I know somewhere a mother is screaming out
like an electric guitar riff on WMMR.

DAY 24- Post for 5/12

Sometimes you write a lot of poems about a city. Most of the time they are under-developed.

Center City

Steam pours up from a rusty, green gutter like an exhaust fan from hell,
as if Lucifer needed some relief.

Across the river is a train yard,
long since abandoned--
desolate and stripped.
A skeleton of all that it once was.

Raped by inactivity,
Consumed by the capital-crazed who saw it no longer feasible
to support its existence. Eventually, the juggernaut of racing iron
slowed and starved to the carcass that remains.

I gaze up at the prominent figures of the Center City skyline.
If I strove to their heights I would have a long way to fall.
Stare at the lights atop a building's peak and realize the futility of wishing on that star.
At my feet is a fallen angel with newspaper wings to keep him warm.
He looks up at the same distant beacon of lost hope through a Mad Dog gaze.

The man with the five month shadow that creeps
from his sad eyes, down his face.
Long since abandoned--
Desolate and stripped.
A skeleton of all he once was.

Violated by isolation--
a job and family that saw it no longer feasible
to support his habit. A brown bag and grime become
permanent accessories to his ensemble of misfortune.

Casualties of a starved city.
Its dinner guests--tycoons with insatiable appetites,
And we are their spring lambs.

DAY 24- Post for 5/11

This is what happens when you run into a bully from grade school while you are in college. Then you write a poem about it (before you know how).

Class Reunion

As I walk with my wife along
the fruit covered funnel cake signs and
Clak clak clak of the roulette wheel;
candied apples and corn dogs.
I see a man that bears resemblance to someone
I used to know.

The black nylon jacket says Coach and Tom
and yes, it was him,
so I walk up and he grins beneath bushy eyebrows and
Makes monkey noises.
My name for him.

In school when he played every sport and
I weighed a buck fifty with a wet parka on
I would mock him
against better judgment.

He would retaliate—
Throwing me into a stack of
aluminum chairs,
clanging against my laughter.

Our little game,
neither of us winning,
just keeping a constant volley
of repartee and repercussion.

And I don’t think we disliked each other.

Now we reminisce, we laugh,
As we did when I would collide
with metal chairs and linoleum.

Our game, your pride, my acceptance.

So I drop five dollars in the jar for your little league team.