Monthly Archives: June 2018

Monday’s Verse 6/24/2018

A poem by Antwon Rose, Jr..


I am confused and afraid
I wonder what path I will take
I hear that there’s only two ways out
I see mothers bury their sons
I want my mom to never feel that pain
I am confused and afraid

I pretend all is fine
I feel like I’m suffocating
I touch nothing so I believe all is fine
I worry that it isn’t though
I cry no more
I am confused and afraid

I understand people believe I’m just a statistic
I say to them I’m different
I dream of life getting easier
I try my best to make my dream true
I hope that it does
I am confused and afraid


Monday’s Verse 6/11/2018

Dear readers,

I regret last week’s absence; only made the more embarrassing that I was hanging out with MVers all weekend, we even talked a little poetry… but all that Kubb they insisted on playing just made me too weary to use my arms on Monday.

Matthew Zapruder (b. 1967) was one of the poets on line during the 1A conversation on modern American poetry a few weeks ago. We already looked at Tracy K. Smith and Kevin Young, his co-guests. Zapruder teaches in the Bay Area and has published several volumes of verse. He said something interesting about rhyme (which was also a point of some contention in the radio hour) in his work, "

rhyme is what I would call ‘conceptual,’ that is, not made of sounds, but of ideas that accomplish what the sounds do in formal poetry: to connect elements that one wouldn’t have expected, and to make the reader or listener, even if just for a moment, feel the complexity and disorder of life


I came across this poem a couple weeks ago and have been wanting to run it. I know that graduations have been going on for more than a month, probably. Nonetheless this is timely; should resonate with some of you going through it, or remembering it, or observing it anew. Have a good week, -ed.


Drawn by ceremonial obligation

up from sleep I woke and stepped

into the borrowed black robes

all ghost bureaucrats trained

to redirect dreaming pretend

we do not like to wear. I drove

my black car to the stadium

to sit on stage and be watched

watching young expectant spirits

one by one with dread certainty

pass before me, clouded

in their names. Then listened

to no one in their speeches say

you’re welcome for allowing

us not to tell you it’s already

too late to learn anything

or defend whatever accidental

instrument in us causes

all these useless thoughts.

Like if you walked for hours

through the vast black avenues

of those server farms all of us

with our endless attention built,

you could almost feel the same

peaceful disinterest as when

your parents talking and smoking

raised their heads for a moment

to smile and tell you go back

upstairs and read the book

you love about myths that explain

weather and death. Now it is

almost June and they are finally

the children they always were.

So more precise than anyone

has ever had to be, go forget

everything we told you

so you can fix what we kept

destroying by calling the future.