::REFLECTIONS IN THE NIGHT::

It was reflections running past the light under street corners

That left one not moving in the night for the cops and coroners

As they arrived under dark skies like a procession of mourners

Outlining the lifeless body and tracing footsteps past lobby corridors

Asking for witnesses to speak up while pushing the crowd back with orders

Shortly after that the television stations came with their video recorders

But people went home already numb from the usual neighborhood disorder.

::BODEGAS::

I dreamt of a place not so far in distance

Where colorful sodas and beer illuminated behind glass prisms

Chocolate bars, cigars, dice and playing cards lay far from vision

Behind the dusty price signs and short lines one could always listen

To the neighborhood stories and gossip without questioning intuition

Unlike the two dollars at hand and rough decisions for those children

Making sweet memories locked away forever in bodega prisons.

::LOWER EAST SIDE::

There are so many times I sit back and think down this memory lane/

So many places I could be from but my reality could only ever explain/

Where I come from and where I will always be is my born and raised/

Where Bodegas and Liquor stores get as much love as the Church we praise/

Cold winter days were always hard to escape/

Especially from that East River breeze hitting your face/

Kids laughing playing games as parents called from fire escapes/

These Avenues if you didn’t know will forever be alphabetically engaged/

From Avenue D to the C moving up to the B… it obviously started at Avenue A/

The summer times were hot and everyone knew where to spend their days/

We looked at project buildings as structures of monumental grace/

Where even crime could not disparage the hard working people in place/

Flashback of Saturdays with softball games don’t seem so far away/

Girls in the neighborhood were beautiful and varied in all types of race/

We all had nicknames even the neighborhood we described in slick ways/

From calling it Alphabet City to the 6th Borough it was our love that just traced/

It on school notebooks or tenement walls and our testament to all that pride/

No matter where you would go you said it was all in you for all Three Sixty Five/

It’s a feelings not many can feel and I felt compelled and alive to describe/

It’s a feeling you would understand and if you don’t its ok it’ll be alright/

But there is nothing more beautiful in life to say than in my eyes/

But to proudly say that I am from the LOWER EAST SIDE.

::THE SCENE::

I heard from my window as the crowded streets were bustling/

Kids laughing, couples arguing and as always some drug hustling/

Cop sirens, Ambulances and so you hope what you mustn’t think/

Poverty screamed with cries and jeers from civilians with guns equip/

Had to see what my mind couldn’t hear from the kitchens running sink/

So I ran a little closer… for closure… not for exposure.. and I didn’t blink/

What I saw was heart breaking, nerve rattling and close to the same exact thing/

Of these daily occurrences in the world and all the unfortunate drama that it brings/

Personally I heard Church bells/

As words fell…/

On the concrete where the gun shells dwell…/

Old ladies on the corner swearing young men to Hell/

Cops asking around for witnesses who were willing to tell/

But it seemed the beer and cigarettes had them overly compelled/

And so the unmarked vehicles speed off into the night as if expelled/

I pulled back the curtain and walked away with no answers even for myself.