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Poem - I Don't Stand

Updated on December 30, 2010

You know
Don't you?
You see my picture
A Yuppie
Clean-cut
Straight
Selfish
Greedy
No problems
Just endless opportunities
But why do you think that?
Are you prejudiced?
Well?
Are you?
Is it possible
That maybe
Just maybe
I'm mad too?
That I can relate to you?
Do I have the right
To swear?
To hate?
To be angry?
Or am I too clean?
Yeah
I'm clean
I have my act
I'm boring
At times
I go with the flow
I don't rock the boat
I drink Chardonnay
At the dinner party
As the guests pretend
To be worldly
Because they stood
In Paris
Or Milan
But have they ever stood
In Harlem?
Or East Austin?
At night?
That's worldly
Why?
Because it's real
I haven't stood there
Because I'm scared
But I think about it
All the time
And I wonder
Do I have the right
To be angry?
Can I write a rap poem?
Can I think like them?
Or does my clean
White
Face
Disqualify me?
I want to be mad
Here
Now
Today
And I will be mad
Not because I'm white
Not because I'm not black
But because I know
Yeah
I know
And I hate that I know
And still smile
With my white wine
And my pretend world
Yeah
It doesn't mean shit
Neither does this
Because I don't stand
In the ghetto

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    • Bel Marshall profile image

      Bel Marshall 6 years ago from Michigan

      I love, love LOVE this line in particular

      "That's wordly

      Why?

      Because it's real"

      Good stuff here.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image

      Twilight Lawns 6 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      This is so reminiscent of early sixties poetry. It has punctuation... they didn't. It has capitalisation... theirs didn't. But it has all the impact that theirs did. Well done.

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you Bel... to me real is where emotions that are personal live... happy is real but pain is VERY real and the East side harbors much pain...

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you Twilight... interesting about puncuation... I'm not even sure I punctuate properly but I guess that's part of my style...

    • Tammy L profile image

      Tammy L 6 years ago from Jacksonville, Texas

      Very interesting. I couldn't help but think about the show "Good Times" when reading this and one episode in particular. The Evans family experienced a different type of prejudice. JJ's girlfriend's parents didn't like him because his family did live in the ghetto. They saw no way for JJ to ever leave the ghetto until JJ's mother showed these snobs a few of JJ's paintings. That episode was touching as well as humorous.

      Nice poem!

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you Tammy... I probably have some friends (more like acquaintances) who wouldn't like my somewhat overt stab at their superficiality but that's what I felt on this one... I am VERY tired of pretension and how so many people attempt to gain credibility on the basis of their travels... in other words where they have stood...

    • kimh039 profile image

      Kim Harris 6 years ago

      Nicely done, Suburban Poet. I can relate so very much, and can understand and value many lifestyles. Sometimes I get tired of superficiality, and sometimes I seek refuge in it! Sometimes I find urban living refreshing and sometimes very limiting.

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you kimh,

      What I hope people realize is that sometimes I deliberately take a certain point of view and then prioritize it to make the point.... as you appear to say we do swing from time to time to different mind-sets. I have to admit drinking the Chardonnay and being superficial... but at times I need to snap out of it; not to be an insufferably self-rightous person but to be more conscious of a greater world around me....

    • Adela Rasta profile image

      Adela Rasta 6 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      This is a brilliant poem. You cut through all the pretentiousness and get right to the heart of the matter and the beauty (sometimes scary, but always real) of the real world.

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you Adela... I read your bio and from your background I take your respect and approval with pride... thanks..

    • lilibees profile image

      lilibees 6 years ago

      As always awesome poems, I love reading them!

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you lilibees... I really appreciate that...

    • Extinct Soul profile image

      Extinct Soul 6 years ago from 14°35'N 121°0'E

      very nice

      yeah

      the poem

      love it

      though i don't want

      to copy it

      it stayed

      printed on my mind

      and now

      i'm writing

      like this too

      hihihihi ^_^

      thank you!

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Thank you Extinct... I am flattered that you wish to emulate my style... just say what you feel and make each line as impactful and succinct as possible and you will provide us with great work...

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 6 years ago from UK

      this is truly great, the style slices through pretensions and delivers a strong message- full of genuine emotion. Loved it! thanks for sharing.

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      @Docmo - thank you so much for the comment... I truly appreciate it...

    • jrsearam profile image

      jrsearam 6 years ago from San Juan, PR

      You recognize and reveal what is common to us all. If you can do that, it doesn't matter that you don't stand in the ghetto. I was moved by your poem. JR

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      @jrsearam - thank you for the comment... it is just a matter of looking around, taking off you biased glasses and understanding what is happening in the world... I don't want to live an insulated and phoney life...

    • LaurieDawn profile image

      LaurieDawn 6 years ago

      We often do what we must to live in the society's chains that have surrounded us. And then every now and again we break free of those chains and live as tho there were no tomorrows! Your prose brings to mind all the things we do in this life that are expected of us, and all the things that we never speak about.

      I loved it. I thought it was beautiful and so very true.

      Blessings,

      Laurie

    • The Suburban Poet profile image
      Author

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      @Laurie - thank you very much and I'm glad you understood my point here....

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