Academic journal article The Journal of Pan African Studies (Online)

For the New Young Bloods on My Porch

Academic journal article The Journal of Pan African Studies (Online)

For the New Young Bloods on My Porch

Article excerpt

Two years two months after post-Katrina flooding, I remember

the first time I saw y'all

Camped out, sitting on my front porch

Chilled out in the cool shade of my cement stoop

Spread eagle on the steps like you owned the place

Bronzed chocolate faces, all sizes, ages, and you

Acted like you owned the place,

I welcomed you,

told you, seeing y'all reminded me of my brother and his friends

standing guard for our block, our street, our neighborhood

though sometimes they stole a smoke from big butts on the street

or made fun of people passing bay

or they played coon can in the street, stopping traffic

There y'all are, the new neighborhood residents

bringing life to this 7th Ward New Orleans block struggling to return to glory.

Come to think of it, I

should have taken names

should have found y'all Mommas & Dads

should have checked if you were in school, and where

should have checked to see whether you could read and write

should have thrown 20 questions to test for any common sense

should have jacked you up for being so cocky

when y'all ran my tap till the bill burned me

linning up cars to wash on my dime

leaving the water running for its source,

y'all not caring for the holes you make in my pockets. …

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