Below are the all-time best Jay Anderson-Taylor poems as chosen by PoetrySoup members
Simple promises that I have made...I really did mean it, yet they were never sustained.
Never think more of myself than I am, somehow my unconscious vanity has betrayed me once again?
Never put someone down unless it serves some greater good, somehow my mouth never got the memo?
Never take more out of this life than you need to sustain you in your daily life, somehow my greed has over taking my virtue and I find myself buying stuff I don't really need?
Never miss a day to thank God for all that he has given me...yet I sometimes put food in my mouth and never give it God's blessings.
Never mind...my good intentions or my moral convictions, damn my heart means well but somehow I lack in my commitment. I thought a desire to do what you say was all I would need to have...but the truth be told, everything you want in this life requires much time and dedication.
As I stared out my project window into the streets were the predators never
seemed to sleep and the dope heads that kept the neighbors in the private homes on
pins and needles as they prowled the street, looking for the next cash cow to supply their drug needs. In the alley where we would play baseball during the daytime against the old trash bin, at night it served as the hiding place for the drug boys dope and guns…It’s sometimes hardto believe that decent people do live here in this place where I live, but they do.
I don’t know how? But really they do, I swear. The alleyway was littered with so much broken glass on the ground, sometimes I would pretend that it was diamonds and would dream of running out one morning and picking it all up and then I would be rich like the people who lived in the private homes up on the hill. At night from my window in the summertime I could smell their grills cooking some expensive meat, that seem to overload my sense and make my belly growl in a hopeless thought that I might somehow get to taste it.
In the distance sirens blare in the middle of the night as the ambulances race to the causalities of the night life. I can still recall those house parties that never seem to end, that’s until the men in blue decided to finally answer the calls and put an end to their night fun, but by that time they were all drunk and doped out or found a mate for the night…as they all spread out onto the side streets like cockroaches when you turn on the light and then shots rang out in the calm distance of the night. People scatter into the night.
My eyelids are now so heavy I can barely hear my own thoughts inside my head. When all of sudden my door flings open, standing there in the doorway I can make out a shadow, I take a deep breath and continue to play like I’m asleep. Wow, it was only my mother, just checking in on her only investment for her future dream of a doctor or lawyer that would not have to deal with this mess, she shuts my door after seeing that I was okay…as she takes a deep sigh of relief, knowing she could take solace that her child was fast asleep.
We have each become Gods basket, no two baskets just alike…no not a one. For each one was woven not to be liken to another, but each charged with a calling to collect assorted pieces of fruit to bring unto him. No not even one liken to another…all capable of gathering Gods fruit and storing them up for the day that his written word comes to be.
Yet though no two basket be just alike…all serving the same the purpose of collecting his fruit. These baskets are used that each of them could or might be able to carry the souls of all the fruits that had fallen off he’s tree…in that his son Jesus whom died for on a tree in an attempt to save all his father’s fruit that had somehow fallen from God’s tree. If you God's chosen basket has become either withered, broken or full of holes? Take it back to the maker and he will make it whole again. Each of us though different are still charged with the tasking of collecting Gods fruit, be they infested with worms, partly rotten, broken or just fowl smelling, he commands you to just pick them up!
Surely how could they be gathered if your own basket had a hole in it nearly the size of a black hole? Surely each of piece fruits that has fallen from your basket will be add to your bill as you go before the Father to take account of what you have collected, who see that your that your basket is empty… standing before him with no fruits to give. Take heed empty baskets…who were some either broke, torn or somehow lacking in strength to hold onto what you have collected for God’s new Eden, go to the Father whom is the weaver of all things and let his infinite mercy fix it before he calls you up to present all that fruit which he entrusted unto you to gather up!
I honor those who died that i might enjoy the liberties and freedoms that I have, this oath I live by and say daily to myself and God that I must forever keep.
My life is what I make it, my dreams can only be realized when I make them...I take full responsibility for anything I do or say. My brothers and sisters and their children are my responsibility.
I will not disgrace my wife and will keep my seed only in marriage. I will respect my community and honor my elders with respect and dignity. I shall not allow drugs in my life, nor will I ever sell them to anyone. This is the black man’s oath to his family, friends. Community and God that bonds me to these words that I speak, Amen!
Upon our roof top did he arrived, two reindeers short and blood shot eyes. With his gray
and black beard with bits of food inside…I thought it was suppose to be white? They also
told me he had a cute button nose…his nose was big and by no means cute. He attempted
to enter thru the chimney top, only to discover that it was a false smoke top. So he being
Old Nick, I could hear him as he fumbled with some keys as he did huff in discuss. His
belt did seem a little bit too big for his gut and his and butt was as big as my dad’s big old
butt. From behind the big chair were I did hide by the tree, I could smell the aroma of
cheap alcohol coming off his breath as he bent over by the Christmas tree to deposit our
gifts. To despite the fact that he had been to plenty of houses before ours that had real
chimneys, his red suit was not covered with one drop single drop of soot! No not even one
dirt spot and the boots that he had on look like my dad's old work boots! I chuckled to
myself… and said maybe it’s made of some special stuff? As I he place the last gift in
place up under the tree, he then reach his hands to the sky and then grabbed his lower
back, I thought he was suppose to be jolly and all that stuff? The whole time he was here,
I could almost be certain that I could hear him cursimg from up under his breath… but to
my surprise he eat the cookies and milk that my mom had left, but the damndest thing
happen as he flung his back pack over his back and proceed to leave, but instead of going
back out the front door, he made a sudden turn toward the stairs and went up and into my
parents room and never left? I final said I had seen enough, I just chucked it up to
another year in the Ghetto and my first real sighting of legendary Ghetto Santa and one
which I hope would be my last!
Remember this as you go through your day today...God knows and sees the good you could do, before you even do it and with that being said, "Make it your job to avoid doing your worst throughout your day today." God gave Eve and Adam a choice between disobedience and subordination...these very choices have been ours since the beginning of time, we are his only creation upon this earth with the ability to make a choice between good or evil. We must all make these daily choices between the two. We each have a choice to decided with the wisdom that he has given each of us and the common sense to know the difference between right or wrong. Everday it is your choice to do either good or bad and either right or wrong, God say's it's your choice and allows you to decide on it, but he never said, it came without an end either.
Looking out onto to the glare off the streets, it almost appears as if the asphalt were a
sheet of glass, as the rain pours down on the street. I see them but they hardly even
notice me. Another cold winter has come and gone for me, life in this Big City ain’t for
the weak. They look at me as if I was some kind of freak, as I bundle trying to keep
warm inside my filth laden sheets…I sometimes can’t remember the last hot meal I did
happen to eat. As I dig through a dumpster in the alley behind some old fancy
restaurant whose name I can’t even pronounce. A fifth grade education, if even that…I
see them, but they rarely ever see me. Lost here in the Big City this ain’t no place for a
country born boy to be…yet I see them, but they rarely see me. My bones ache and
sometimes I can hardly see, no refuge from the hot summer’s day heat…Look at them
all riding around in their air conditions cars with the music blasted so loud, I see them
but they rarely see me. Don’t pay me any mind. I ain’t mad at this old world or even
God… just upset with myself because I let the Big City life capture me and still my
youth. Still do what you always do when it comes to someone like me? Stare off at
someone else and just pretend as though you don’t see me standing here, just asking
for some help. Yes, look away…because no matter what you do? I still see you.
Ponder this thought my brothers and sisters with me…it’s just an observation
from someone who has seen the same things you see, night after night as I
walk the streets.
Who made that sister sell her body just to be able to buy your crack?
Who made that brother shoot another brother in the head, all over a piece of
land that neither of them owns?
Who made that sister have a baby at just 15 when she couldn’t even afford to
feed it or give it a decent home?
Who made that brother throw that trash in our streets, who told him he could
write graffiti anywhere he please?
Who told that brother that just because he wears his pants hanging off his but
makes him look cool?
Ponder my brothers now can you picture this with me...what if we stop trying to
live black and instead just be black and do what we all just need to do to do
right in life?
What if we each took responsibility for ourselves and stop blaming other races
and people for a ghetto we are each creating by the way we each are acting?
So, you tired of this ghetto and you wanna get out? Then take a good hard
look at yourself my brother or sister's and make sure that you are not the one
who is contributing to turning this place into a ghetto instead of a place you can
call your home.
Swelled with words that told no truth, I lied like a young child caught with a crayon
and a wall covered in the proof. With each word utter more broken and more aloof,
never thinking of the good in just telling the truth, with a blink of an eye and wipe of
my face all in an empty effort to hide my disgrace. This broken promise more rotten than
an old man’s decaying tooth. Yet with each additional lie, it becomes even harder to
just tell her the damn truth. It all started with such good intention? But once a
broken word is spoken…with each passing day the lie gains more strength until it
over takes the truth and it soon becomes what you believe to be the truth.
Think of the last time…you made a mistake? Someone told you not to do it, yet you did it anyway. He still teaches…were just not listening. Remember, as you jumped from that plane? You thought you heard a voice say, “Don’t do it” As your shoot tore open just feet from the ground. He still teaches…were just not listening. That day you stole those clothes from the store, your mother once told you, “Don’t take what’s not yours.” He is still teaching…your just not listening. You spent all your money and the rent is past due, you know what they say, “A fool spends for the day, and the wise man then receives it and then invests it for the future.” When God sends people and silent whispers in the wind to teach you about life, receive his words and what he has been teaching…because God has not stop teaching. But we have stopped listening for Gods never changing words. He does still teach, you just need to learn to decipher his words.