Beyond Words by Kevin Young

If you bomb

the IND

or tag the 2

 

downtown

—gallery-bound—

dousing it in tribal

 

shrapnel, you’re it

—the shit—

If you can lie

 

between the rails

—Please Stand

Clear the Closing—

 

or press yourselves

betw. train

& the wall

 

spray can rattling

like a tooth—The roof

the roof

 

the roof is on

fire—soon

the 6 will whistle

 

past, swinging

like a night stick—

Officer Pup throwing

 

a brick

@ that Mouse

Ignatz, in love—

 

#$!?!!!!—then

you’ll have found

risk. A calling—

 

Crash, Daze, Pray

covering trains

like cave paintings,

 

avoiding the German

shepherds—ACHTUNG—

while the cars sit

 

in the yards

—what no one else in this

city owns. Making

 

their names

known—Dondi, Boy-

5, B-Sirius, Crazy

 

Legs, Coolie C—

The city clears

its throat

 

the subway shaking

the buildings above—

We don’t need

 

no water let

the motherfucker

burn— Futura 2000,

 

Phase II, Quick

& Sex & Zephyr

& Lady Pink—

 

Fab 5 Freddy

(n� Braithwaite)

saying everyone’s

 

a star. “Rapture”—

 

the whole planet’s in

on it—Chilly Most

Being the Host Coast

 

to Coast—Freddy’s painted

Campbell’s Soup Cans that read

DADA & POP instead

 

of beef barley—

the UFO has landed

& a brother’s

 

stepped out, alien, dressed

in white. Then when

there’s no more cars

 

he goes out at night

& eats up bars—

graffiti like 3 card monte—

 

running, avoiding the pigs

like a black muslim

bean pie. DJ spinning

 

says my my.

Pay attn.—

say, ain’t that

 

Basquiat spinning

 

disks behind Blondie—

SAMO AS AN END

TO MINDWASH RELIGION—

 

45s stacked high

as a Dag-

wood sammich?

 

Hungry, this B-

boy’s headed

to the top—Yes

 

Yes y’all

You don’t stop—

blowing up.

 

Kevin Young, “Beyond Words” from To Repel Ghosts. Copyright © 2001 by Kevin Young.