Charles Curtis Blackwell

THE 3RD RAIL IN THE HEART OF SPRING

After a long period of silence
The sign speaks in plastic letters
          “THE TICKET IS EXPIRED”
another long period of time passes
like a long ship in a fantasy; passing

A shinny piece of string  /  dangling
       connected to nothing; serving no purpose
             just dangling. . .
metal running through the ear lobe
a peeping noise
       running through the ear of the tunnel
her tooth is missing in chatter
and it is so painful to be dressed in shinny sequins
        and no teeth
in front of the train
      “Oh fairy, come quick!”
       “Help US!”
near to dear  /  here to dear
catch the ball bouncing on the track
chuck that ball  / grab on tight
       to the wounded ankle
            the woman will let you

Outside the station tweed suits running to catch
      that particular twain / train
            to elsewhere / elevator down
                  to the pit of . . .
Besides the windy chimes of the woman with the ankle shackles
       going unnoticed
        her oil drip tears washed off
remains of relics in a canister, once bleak bleach to cleanse
ethnicity for all those of origin, who hate who they are

A youthful chant
      breaking the sound barrier and gang silence
says “It’s all in the name, in the name of art”
       less fortunate / and less formidable
art maintained by the power structure
     to keep us,
         sane
         silent
         sucking
               and in solitude
                  for the sake of . . .

“God! I’m lonely!”
speaks the toothless woman
and time has not expired
holding on to the rail

we’re all going to ride shotgun past the truth
It is less formidable than food
or just a distraction
like heartache, played out by an entire symphony
      creating a clanging sound
         clap-clap
the bleaching cream is melting down the cheeks where
       tears once stood
we all arrive at the corner intersection
       Now, in a wasteful manner
we pose
       for the blinking light
              going on / and off
not noticing the blind woman with all her teeth
       in her pocket chattering
stand still for the flash
       as still as steel
for in a moment we’re all going to all be SOMEBODY!
       camera ready; train arrive
             to take us there

 

 

 

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Charles Blackwell was pursuing an art degree when he became partially blind as the result of a fall. After putting his education on hold to adjust to his disability, he returned to college and earned a degree in sociology from California State University. He is a member of the C.E.T.A. County Artist of Sacramento program and he has received various awards for his role as a community organizer for programs dedicated to individuals with disabilities. He produces his writing and art in his California studio and says his life-long love for jazz music serves as the focus of his work. His website is: http://charlesblackwell.weebly.com/

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