Poems from the Community

Argon - Kyle Donaldson

Shall I move these forms and
symbols matched above
my maker?
Shook beneath the
storm lauded all for
anger, hold this clench
and balled up fist
the pieces and these parcels
rile high, prone
to every fit exertion
hold its breath common
are these motives.
The native spirit true
and agile artist,
the sickness of the
world , that penetrating virus.
My veins are cold my
bones they chill is this
sickness unto
And accompanying that
thought I must soon
or later

Street Vendors - Joseph Hurtado

whistling on the girls in the tight jeans
who's hips sway through in the swing
on the 80's wash of blue bottom
and white crush top

The girls get pushed a bit to the smile
cornered on the quick
in the jewelry district
in the grid
where the gold swings and the platinum blings

The vendors sitting side by side and sweating out
the day
one on to the other
together in the green can newsstand
sellers in tight pants belly over hang
bent on stools, too small
behind sweated magazines
and claiming their corners
The paired groseros remain behind the clipped
curtain of magazines like:

"En Vivo"
"Todo Anal"

and the Spanish written Archie comic strips.
While others stand beside their piece of green America
of stands that are no more than a sweat can
with two
barn doors
their merchandise
a cheap-to-the color print consortium
magazines are yellowed even before hitting the streets
the candies are second hand
the gum too hard to chew
and the cigarettes are carried over the borders
to circumvent California tax

Its a fold out business
a 4 by 6 by 3, length by height by depth
tight, and two men
shoulder to shoulder
sweating on the rub
the day keeps at a slow pay

While on 7th and Broadway
cheap lip smacking air kisses
and street smooth eye winks step out
a thing Luis finds easy
he charges toward you
in a toothy smile
ostrich boots
and a buckle from Juarez
He finds himself above the standard
A 5' 2" at a 6' walk
he makes his mark of sales
and continues
he sometimes finger-snaps

-tourists get drawn in

then repulsed by the panting

-a wet tongue on a wife's arm

the tug on a girlfriend's hand

I don't say hi
but like a veterano of the streets
my back remains
against the wall
from three hours of walk
sweaty burgers and a bottled coke
and the hundreds on the pass
but none that notice
they know the blocks ahead
and have memorized the street blocks behind
their heads stiff against the sidewalks they walk
I cross out and head out
eyes looking forward
and not on a down tilt
but sometimes on a side scene
with mental notes and photo speech

I was born to this city
and now that it sleeps
I feel there's less room to stretch out my thoughts.
My head, here, goes on the down tilt
eyes to the back sounds
cracking from one building to the other
in a tunnel of near twin towers
crouching and stealing each minute

Walking the Pacific - Stephen Lindow

I pinch my way down to 500 feet
above Los Angeles on my iPhone.

To see myself looking up at the godhead-me
looking down on the earthling-me

is today's extent of fame ---
waiting for the Rapid 7.

I begin to cross the Pacific
with finger and thumb.

After a minute, which must
be a thousand miles,

I come to a whale
who's working out a koan.

As I answer it,
the whale descends ---

day-dreaming is telepathy.
My 7 pulls up

as I arrive in Japan
four minutes later.

Winters in Los Angeles - Ivan Smason

The winters in Los Angeles are frightful
The cold breezes spiteful
Why I've seen people wearing hoods and hats
To keep their heads warm sometimes - frightful

In winters in Los Angeles
The cool gusts of wind along the beachheads and shorelines
Frustrate the surfers and the beachcombers
The affluent, the homeless and the unemployed

Winters in Los Angeles are demonic
Obscenely laconic - when the winds accelerate
I've known of countless incidents in which Los Angelenos
Took to staying indoors - frightful

In winters in Los Angeles, film studios and the like are challenged
By the cool gusts of wind - spiteful
From Culver City to Burbank, the big studios and the solo proprietorships
Frightful are the winters in Los Angeles

Los Angeles St - Christopher Mulrooney

the dangerous curves ahead
malingeringly multiplied
linger in the august memory
of slaves here and abroad
to a pink fashion sense
roadmending abolishes quite

this is the street of heavenly views
the Amsterdam and Zurich marts
compounded daily on an account
severely multiplied in recondite addition
on a wine chest the silver salver
and brazen charger receive the slip
of paper identifying the culprit
it is a moment of supreme silence
the witness is large or small effaced
to be sure leaving nothing but a mind
scarred to be sure and no road more
assured than this one line by line

Palm Trees - JoyAnne O'Donnell
I sometimes sleep under a palm tree
The soft blowing breeze to be
Relaxing thoughts cool my earth
That lies beneath grasses birth
I can read natures book
And drift out to times masterpieces look.


What's Your Vision for a Healthy L.A.?


What's Your Good Food Story?

LEAVE A COMMENT Leave Comment  

Funding provided by
Boeing logo Dept of Cultural Affairs logo Cal Humanities logo City of Los Angeles logo Art Works logo California Endowment logo