No Jake Brakes

No Jake Brakes

Southern Street signs
as foreign to me as
Southern street sense
or road sense
half the streets not being streets
as we have come to know them
that’s the least of the matter

Even if there was a sensical explanation
not sure I’d want to know
kept remembering a Jake of my past
first hunchback I everknew everknew Jake
the kind of guy who even if he didn’t wear
the same clothes, looked like he wore
the same clothes
we were politically correct before
that particular term saw the first light of night
we tore into Jake only for the clothes thing
this was in elementary school
when some of us were still virgins

So does the sign mean
no brakes made by someone named Jake
anyone named Jake
Is there a signature on the brakes
like on a Renoir
Every region has it’s unclarities
it’s uncertainties
and it’s lies
There is not an authentic Philly Cheesesteak in
there could not be
just as Southern Soul Food
does not exist in Italian South Philadelphia

I don’t know if Jake went to any High School
or what his life was like
after he stopped hanging out with
The Thomas Holme Elementary School Misfits
for even then many of us knew
let he who is without deformity
cast the first sin
none of us were like that
I can say quite confidentially
without even talking to any of them any of them again
none of us are undeformed
none of us
could be undeformed
even if some of us
carried our deformities in a box
like a friendly severed head.

Bob Small     12-26-03-revised 3-6-04  slightly revised 7-20-13


About bobsmall1

Bob Small has read at Bacchanal, Barnes and Noble, Borders, The Booksource (Swarthmore), The Clark Park Festivals,Community College of Philadelphia Highwire Gallery, The Mad Poets Annual Food Fest Reading, The Middle East Restaurant, Nexus GalleryThe Painted Bride Arts Center, The Philadelphia Ethical Society, Robin's Bookstore The University of Pennsylvania and also in New York City, Trenton, NJ, Washington, DC, and in many Delaware Valley Venues. He is the author of numerous chapbooks, including El Otro Lado (with Maralyn Lois Polak), On watching America Die, Small Steps and Toes (with Lamont B. Steptoe), and The Unapoet. This is his first Reading in over a year. Bob Small was Founder and President of the two decades old Poets and Prophets, which presented Poetry Readings in both Delaware County and Philadelphia. Bob was the Chair of The Delaware County Green Party and was the First Green Party Candidate in Delaware County (2005). He was also a Green Party National Delegate, among other duties. He is the Founder and Facilitator of The Pennsylvania Ballot Access Coalition (PaBac), which is a Coalition of both Independents and Third Parties., seeking to legislatively improve Pennsylvania's Ballot Access Laws. (Facebook) Bob is also a founding member and Facilitator of Democracy Unplugged, and Delco Debates, which has presented Independent and Third Party Forums in Delaware County since 2004. Facebook) He was formerly involved with Cinema Resistance, and Delco Pledge of Resistance. Bob currently lives in Swarthmore with his wife and their menagerie of animals. He is currently focused on writing a Novel and organizing his Poetry, which he posts on his Blog (Bob Small1). He is retired from most of the above activities, except Delco Debates and Poets and Prophets, which he may return to.
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