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Euology for a King

Posted Mar 18 2006

Eric is a 28 year-old poet originally from Milwaukee. He went to school at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, before going to Iowa for a couple of years. He later ended up in Madison, WI, where he currently rests his head. Eric is an advisor at UW-Madison, among other things. In his free time he enjoys reading and writing poetry and finding ways to incorporate social justice into teaching poetry/spoken word to young people.

E. Mata kicks some verses
his name could have been
anything that sounds Spanish but
those he ran with called him something
along the lines of big boy, beast, nutman, snoop
his street name
the one tattooed across his heart
where he knew his father
would never look

this is his story

with hands clasped and
pressed firmly against his head
he prays to millimeter gods
for the strength to breathe
through the night
and the courage
to face one more day

he walks along concrete destinies
with a f*ck the world mentality
but he doesn’t realize
he’s killing himself
when the world he is fighting
is merely a mirrored reflection
of everything that is him

he’s blinded by the anger
of being distant from his father
he’s blinded by the hate
he sees embedded in his eyes
he’s blinded by the tears
which he’s learned are better kept to himself
so he leaves himself in the solitude
of dreams he doesn’t quite remember
when he greets the morning sun

he never knew how to let
his family love him
so all he sees is
what the streets have placed
in front of him
and not the shoulders of his family
where he’s stood all along

so he strategically places
a gun in his waistband
for protection from himself
because he never knows
the direction in which
his words will fly
and he never knows
when the echoes of bullets
in his ears are no longer echoes
but shots aimed in his direction

he will die someday

he will die at the hands of someone
he could’ve known since childhood
someone he probably played
dodge ball with on the schoolyard
someone who could’ve been his
best friend at age 5

he will die and we will spread
the ashes of his memories
among our sins

he may live to see fatherhood
but he will die before then
he will cast himself
into the darkness that exists
behind the memories of closed eyes
and his soul will wander somewhere
between earth and sky
waiting for the light of forgiveness
to shine on his existence
but until then his sons and daughters
will be without him

his story will resonate
in the faces of our sons
we will see the rage
slowly seeping into their eyes
and we will pray that they will
have the courage to breathe through the night
and the strength to live longer than we will

he will die someday
and its on that day
that I will read this
eulogy for a king
on the very spot
his blood stained the
concrete of our future
and I will cry those tears
this king could not

Copyright ©2004 eric mata

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