Four Selected Poems

1. Talked to Alexander / 2. Things Fall / 3. Now That I’m… / 4. City Shine

1. “Talked to Alexander:”

Fossil fuel dreams until the tears come

And you half-cry, collapsing on your arms

His dad has a whole in the side of his throat

And the other side of the hospital

A child is born, his second, second boy

My father too with it; diagnosis?

Worse than they thought…more

And a strain of it so severe that

Even a few cells can mean re-surfacing

A year or five years down the road

2. “Things Fall:”

This is the time of year that you have waited for, and now it is here. Thousands of shades of green, at least thousands, and yellows, and greens that are becoming yellow. A few leaves have fallen, but it is still early in the fall, no real hint of the barrenness of winter to come. Winter seems so far away. Summer – with its oppressive heat and its thick Deep South humidity – seems so far away.

The clouds of white with hints of gray are painted on a true blue dream of a sky. They are moving with the breeze, very breezy in gusts. The sound of those first leaves tumbling across the street, blowing on the trees, falling off through the air.

“Lucky,” I say to the birds flying by. That first sign of red and orange on the big trees, such bucolic beauty, this suburb, if you ignore the car sounds and houses – McMansions, mixed in with older brick homes.

“Clunk.” My neighbor’s portable b-ball goal just blew over. Hard to ignore that.

Even that was on theme, I guess, the theme being things fall.

3. “Now That I’m…”:

Now that I’m an artist

That explains a lot

No wonder I stared like that

No wonder I listened too hard

No wonder I had to be you

No wonder I had to change

I had to try you on

You did not fit maybe

But I remember what the dress felt like

Everyone, almost

Almost every social level

I walked there

It’s disgusting

It’s insane

It’s like Jesus

It’s like, and I was black, almost

I have been infantile and upwardly mobile

I have never been you, thank God

But we have probably rubbed shoulders

I was compelled to walk in many shoes

So confused

So curious and I stared like that

And I listened too hard

And for what?

So I could, someday, write about it all

Now that I’m an artist, that finally makes sense

4. “City Shine:”

Glimmer Shimmer

Glimmer Shimmer

City Shine

Shine Clean My Mind

Glimmer Shimmer

Glimmer Shimmer

City Shine

Shine Clean My Mind

This Street Sweeper

This Street Walker

Sounds Of The Sights

Of My City-Talker

Disarmingly Smashing

Like Billy’s Pumpkins

And Other Fall Traditions

As Full Of Life’s Rich Pageant

As Classic City Gameday

In Red And Black

My Heart Was Bruised And Blue

Then I Re-met You

I Remit To You

To You, My Lord

To You, My Lord

And You Placed Me Here

In The Heart Of

One Of The Greatest Cities

In The World

You Placed Me

In The South – My Home

You Placed Me

In Georgia – My Home

You Placed Me In The ATL

And This Is For My City

I Speak For Her

A Bad Girl Gone Good

City Shine

Like New York, Only New

Glimmer Shimmer

Y’all, My City Shines

Glimmer Shimmer My Mind

About the author

Han Vance

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