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Switchblade Kisses - An Alternative Love Poem

Updated on September 30, 2016

Inspiration for This Poem

This poem was inspired by one stanza of verse I was hired to write for a client. I thought the topic of "A modern day romance/love in a street gang" a very interesting challenge and decided to write an entire poem around it.

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Switchblade Kisses

Guns and switchblades

On every street,

Gang wars rage

But love cuts deep.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

Take squatters' rights

In abandoned buildings.

Interracial love,

And drive-by killings.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

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Plan the hit

Before you fall.

Life in a street gang,

You must stand tall.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

Let's play tag

With the police,

Or hide and seek,

It's war and peace.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

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Race means nothing

On the street.

Look out for yourself,

Avoid the heat.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

Hispanic, Asian,

Black, or White,

Who gives a shit,

All people fight.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

New York Street Gang Savage Skulls
New York Street Gang Savage Skulls | Source
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Theft and muggings

In the mall,

Sex in an alley

Against the wall.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

You sell your body

To make a buck,

I deal in crack

And push my luck.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

Form an alliance,

Make a pact.

I'll protect you,

You watch my back.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

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Kiss me now

For life is short.

Choose your poison

Sharps or snort.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

Is this the love

We've never known?

Both of us

From broken homes.

Ω Ψ Ω Ψ Ω Ψ

Switchblade kisses

Will do this man.

Short term pleasure

While I can.

Comments

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    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 9 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you Lawrence. Much appreciated. I am about to check out your latest hub too.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 9 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      John

      Great work, the title alone drew me in, then the poem was great.

      Lawrence

    • profile image

      Faith-Hope-Love 10 months ago

      The piece is very well thought out and it has increased my understanding as I relate it to experience. Keep up this good Work. In this world we have a great need for it. You are the best My Friend. Thank you and God Bless.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for returning to read this again, John. This came about when I was asked t write a slogan for a clothing brand that had to incorporate "gang life and love." I dearly want all my writing to make a difference and help inform and make the world a better place. The problem is getting those who need the message to read it. Feel free to use it in your ministry.

    • profile image

      Faith-Hope-Love 10 months ago

      It was well put together John. I have been back to it on mre than one occasion. It portrays the gang life as it is seen through the eyes of youth. But puts it in a perspective as to cause them to pause and take stock. I find it very helpful and informative. Great Piece. Keep doing this worthwhile work. You have my support and respect. God Bless.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 10 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      LOL.....Well, we all love it when someone loves our work!! That's at least 50% of our reason for this crazy passion, yes? Otherwise we could write all day and night locked in a room and stick all our work in a box!! LOL

      This poem really brought me to the streets...so, obviously it's a great work.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Paula, I love it when you love my writing :) I tried to capture the gang atmosphere as best as best I could. I must admit that I was quite proud of how this poem came together. Thanks.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 10 months ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Jodah.....WOW! Love this. This is powerful in a very awesome way! You give the perfect image of street life & love....struggles & hardship kisses & knives. One of your best!. Paula

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you, Vellur. Much appreciated.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 10 months ago from Dubai

      Powerful words portraying love in the dangers of the street world, great write.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Hello Mike. Yes, I have been blown away by most of the comments on this hub. I was pleased with it but it still surprised me.

    • mckbirdbks profile image

      mckbirdbks 10 months ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Hi John - Waves of accolades pour in for this piece. Tough life on the streets. but you have done it justice.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Well, thank you Dianna, that is a wonderful comment. I admit this poem was something a little different.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 10 months ago

      What an emotional read on the topic of kisses. Your title was a draw for sure but the poem was electric all the way.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Shauna. I enjoyed writing this poem, glad you enjoyed reading it. I appreciate that comment.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 10 months ago from Central Florida

      John, this is powerful and very well written. It flows across the page and through the mind.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks for that wonderful comment, Nadine.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 10 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      You are a very creative writer and have a way with words. Loved it.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for that very informed and encouraging critique, herownwings. I appreciate you reading and commenting.

    • herownwings profile image

      Emily 10 months ago from Oregon

      What a wrenching piece. Wonderful stanzas, clipped with razor precision. Covering numerous aspects of street/gang life in mini internal vignettes was an impressive feat. I thoroughly enjoyed reading, though the content was realistically grim. Thank you for sharing. :)

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks for sharing that idea, Faith. Sounds interesting and possible.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 10 months ago from southern USA

      You are so creative, John, that I know you could somehow make it into a series if you had the time...Switchblade Kisses: etc. I'm glad you like the idea of a series.

      Maybe along the lines of focusing on the love between two characters and their internal struggles of not wanting to bring a child into their gang life but still having the desire to have a child ... Or just detailing daily life and one of their members killed...or fighting over territory. Well, you get the idea. Having each new poem zero in on a specific struggle or trial and ending still with love somehow LOL

      Maybe it will come to fruition. If so, I know it will be amazing and I know all will enjoy reading.

      Blessings

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks, Shyron but they are your lines and they just add value to the comments.

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 10 months ago from Texas

      Add the lines if you wish John, I give them to you.

      Blessings my friend

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Jan, I think you certainly explained why young people join gangs. They need a sense of belonging and what they see as a form of love. Yes, it is a side of life we don't often delve into. Thank you for the kind comment. I am glad you found this poem, and the images, enjoyable.

    • janshares profile image

      Janis Leslie Evans 10 months ago from Washington, DC

      Very original to say the least, Jodah. You gave the reader a look through a window we rarely peer into, either because we are afraid to or don't care to. Well done. Love exist everywhere, even in the darkest places. They say at the core of gangs is the need for love and a sense of belonging. Great poem, great images.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Those are some very good additional lines, Shyron. Thanks for the read and kind comment.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks Suzette. I sure had trouble finding a suitable main image....finally stumbled on this when I was about to give up. Glad you liked the title too.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Very encouraging comment, Faith. It is a compliment having my writing compared to what Frank can produce..especially in this dark crime type genre. I'd like to make it into a series of sorts but I hadn't thought of that. Thanks for the idea. Glad you enjoyed this. Blessings back.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks faith-hope-love. Much appreciated.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Shanmarie, I am glad I successfully conveyed a picture through the words of this poem and that you could clearly visualize it. I guess it is Romeo and Juliette in another guise.Thanks for reading.

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 10 months ago from Texas

      John, amazing hub about

      Inner city gangs

      None care who it bangs

      Switchblade kisses

      Teeth extracted

      Switchblade kisser

      No longer attracted

      ******

      Blessings my friend

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 10 months ago from Taos, NM

      Switchblade kisses-what an oxymoron and what an image. This is well done, John. I felt swept up in the gang life of the inner city; you portrayed if so well.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 10 months ago from southern USA

      Wow, John, this is fabulous writing. Love the creative title, which intrigues the reader to read on. Great choice of imagery, but your words set the scene in one's mind. Seems Frank is incognito at the moment and you have given him a run for his money here, as your poem stands right up there and then some.

      Maybe you can make this into some kind of series somehow?

      Enjoyed the read for this Friday night.

      Blessings

    • faith-hope-love profile image

      John Ward 10 months ago from Richmond, British Columbia, Canada.

      Very Very Poignant and so very true. Good Work.

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon 10 months ago from Texas

      Impressive. You captured the scene well. I can clearly see it as I read. It reminds me of a modern day telling of Romeo and Juliet.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks, Jackie. I think being a writer IS much like being an actor, especially if you write fiction.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 10 months ago from The Beautiful South

      Wow, John, very well done! You became an actor and played the part splendidly!

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you, Dana. That is what I was aiming for. A long way from my kid's stories isn't it?

    • Jodah profile image
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      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks for reading, Stages of ME. Your words are spot on, and I pray that too.

    • Jodah profile image
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      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks Clive. I did my best.

    • Jodah profile image
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      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Savvy. Yes, it was an interesting challenge that I enjoyed for a change of pace. Yep, a tough way to live for sure.

    • Jodah profile image
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      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      I have never been in a gang either, Lori..so it's all my imagination.

    • Jodah profile image
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      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for saying that, Abhimanyu. Glad you enjoyed this.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks, Manatita. Had to make it tough to represent the lifestyle appropriately. Thanks for the kind comment.

    • Jodah profile image
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      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Hey, Larry. It is good to get an in depth comment from you. Yeah, one of my darker ones. We are a bit behind here down under as our equal treatment of our indigenous Australians and I think it was the 70s when they were allowed to vote. We have recently been struggling with some racism issues that have surfaced in sport and in regard to the Muslim situation etc but basically we are are accepting nowadays, so don't worry. One of my sons is married to a Filipino and another to an Indonesian and I have a nephew married to an Aboriginal lady...and no problems. The reference in this poem is due to most of my research involved 70s street gangs.. So that is the era it is really set in. Oh, and crocs aren't prejudice either...they'll eat anyone. In fact they prefer unwary foreigners. :)

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 10 months ago from LOS ANGELES

      This is a powerful and strong poem.

    • The Stages Of ME profile image

      The Stages Of ME 10 months ago

      Jodah,

      Yes, these words cut deep, but very truthful depiction of the brokenness in our world. I pray for the hearts of man. I pray for children everywhere, especially those on the streets. I pray for the light that is still very real and it will cover the darkness. Hang in there World, the streets he writes of are cold and harsh, there will be comfort one day. Hang in there!

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Cheers, Ruby. I like the pun about my rhyme :) glad you enjoyed my insight into gang life.

    • clivewilliams profile image

      Clive Williams 10 months ago from Nibiru

      interesting. Captured what the streets are all about.

    • savvydating profile image

      savvydating 10 months ago

      You gave yourself quite a challenge and did the topic justice. It was easy to envision the lifestyle. But what a way to live---knowing each day may be your last. Nice job, Jodah.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 10 months ago from Pacific Northwest

      Interesting topic I've never been in a gang but seems you've captured it well.

    • Abhimanyu gaur profile image

      Kshitiz Gaur 10 months ago from India

      John, you can write a poem on any topic and you have proved this once again. I enjoyed reading this poem. The pictures also compliment the poem well.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 10 months ago from london

      Very interesting one, Bro. One with a difference, as they say. Goes to show. I never really finished Murder on the Mountain, but I wanted to add Love and intrigue.

      A bit tough in some places, but I guess that is how it is. Life! Great Poem!

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 10 months ago from Oklahoma

      And sometimes you say I'm too dark;-)

      I enjoyed the poem. It certainly made me think.

      I don't ever want to be too intrusive concerning one's art, but I didn't really understand the correlation of interactial love to a violent lifestyle?

      I do know Australia has had its fair share of problems with racial issues. Correct me if I'm wrong, wasn't it 1990 before you guys were completely desegregated?

      Are you suggesting that interactial couples are pushed to the fringes of society where you're at? I know for years that's been the plight of homosexuals here in the states. Things are finally getting better.

      As for my wife and I, we're interactial. We live in the heart of Hicksville here in Oklahoma and it's all well accepted. I'm a teacher and she's a nurse. No gang affiliation needed, lol.

      Sorry I ramble. I always like to understand the climate of different places, and my family and I want to go to Australia and see the Crocs one of these days. I'd like to know we wouldn't be treated poorly.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 10 months ago from Southern Illinois

      John, your rhyming words cut like a knife. I guess the streets are poison all over the world. You were able to capture that in your real-life poetry and pictures. Bravo!!!

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      I had a feeling this was going to be special as I was writing it, but the comments so far have blown me away. Thank you Chitrangada, and glad you liked that image too.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 10 months ago from New Delhi, India

      This is so powerful!!

      Your ability to weave words shines through your poem and what a wonderful first picture to complement it!

      Brilliant indeed!

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Hey, Flourish. I like that comment. Cheers.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for the great comment, Bill. I always add a notch to my gun when I impress you.

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      FlourishAnyway 10 months ago from USA

      Raw and fabulous

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      Bill Holland 10 months ago from Olympia, WA

      You had me with the title of the poem...after that it was just frosting on a delicious cake!

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Gina, thank you for the great comment. Glad it worked. Much appreciated.

    • Jodah profile image
      Author

      John Hansen 10 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks for reading my poem, Cheaptrick. I am so glad you love it.

    • Gina Welds-Hulse profile image

      Gina Welds Hulse 10 months ago from Rockledge, Florida

      Such powerful imagery! You've captured gang life...and love...in all its street glory. Well done!

    • cheaptrick profile image

      cheaptrick 10 months ago from the bridge of sighs

      Hats off!What an effort jodah!Loved it!