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Best In The Joint Poems | Poetry

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The Best In The Joint Poems

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The Lonely Poet

Paste on your passion smile
Crisp all your words
as you settle yourself 
to be self-consumed, heard
Whisper sweet nothings
which only you know
Don't stop the banter,
the words or the flow
You've reached the summit
of the loneliest point
You're king of the vacancy
best in the joint
Write all your poems
on the back of your hand
and read them at supper
of cream pie and sand
Your siblings will stand up
and whisper applause
You've felt all emotion
and ridden all stars
They bid you good-bye
for you're out of their league
and to think you just wanted
to be heard, succeed...

Copyright © Tatyana Carney | Year Posted 2005

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Damn shame

                          It's a damn shame they say honor thy parents

                                                But I had none

                                     They shot my only love grandma

                                                   In a drive-by

                                               Now I'm all alone

                                        What a shame bout my pops
                                              Rolling Stone he was

                                             sucka was never home

                                             Even in heart and soul

                                              What a damn shame 
                                            Wanna talk about Shame

                                           How about my sista Trisha

                                                   A junkie a ho

                                         Was found two years before

                                     sprawled on some basement floor

                                            What a shame what a life

                                       God Oh God I want to blame you

                                             Lord I want to cuss you

                                        I want to ask why why why me

                                            But can only blame myself

                                              As I sit here in the joint

                                    Staring at these walls and my thoughts

                                                 Doing twenty to life

                                         have no pity my little brotha man 

                                            You see you have but one life ..

                                                      One damn life

Copyright © Tonytocaa Camacho | Year Posted 2015

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Visions of scientists in white coats, with glass jars
Scraping layers of paint off new cars
Or women with heavy blackframed glasses 
Weighing the sugar content of two sweetened masses
Or testing the strength of steel cables to breaking point
(Same approach  to  the patience of  the menfolk in the joint)

But equally when your neighbor puts down his banjo
For out to the backyard lightning-still he’s gonna  go
Check to  see the alcohol content is always the same
And put a match to a spoonful and watch the flame. 
Or when the gas station guy changes a tire, and you arrive
Late, you kick the tire before you drive.

Quality control can be done with lens and vial;
But equally it can be done bronco-style.

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2011

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The Door

some days are too long, too draining, too sad
some days last...
something missing,
blame is all you get
stop screaming,
the outside world isn't listening.
this door is closed.

the judge himself is not man enough
to judge himself-
he worries about
unrelenting judgments
that began in the New York Hills 
the eastern door when
you bit your lip as a guarantee
inner turmoil was real to you,
the wall is real to you,
and you can’t get out
this door is closed.

stay a little bit longer on the ground-
do whatever your blue collar working-class hypothesis tells you.
your roots
are shatterproof,
life on the street is harsh
harsherer than life in the joint
and every five seconds somewhere in the world, someone goes blind
and can’t find the door.

Copyright © James Ranahan | Year Posted 2015

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Saul Grills Marilyn at a Seedy New Orleans Jazz Dive

Saul’s twinkling eyes took it all in – the platinum hair framing a first-class face, the silvery sheath dress wrapped around a figure that was out of sight, but in plain view. She was definitely the classiest thing in the joint -- Bannister’s by name, a jazz club just off Camp Street in New Orleans – and she was leaning against the side of a very lucky piano, crooning a sultry tune as Saul watched her from his table at the other end of the room, nursing some straight-up rye and taking puffs off a Lucky Strike – which wasn’t half as smokin’ as Marilyn. The ceiling fans didn’t put much of a dent in the muggy air, but that didn’t stop a cold chill from making its way down Saul’s backbone as Marilyn belted out the last few bars of her suggestive little ditty.

When she was done the patrons roused themselves from their stupor long enough to beat their hands together like they meant it, and Saul did the same, then motioned a cigarette girl over and whispered in her ear, dropping a fiver onto her tray. The girl swayed her way over to Marilyn, who was having a tête-à-tête with her piano player. After a few seconds he split, disappearing through a curtained doorway, and Marilyn perched herself on a stool at the far end of the bar. The cig girl muttered the message, jerking a thumb in Saul’s direction, and Marilyn started to shake her head as she turned toward him, but the moment her baby blues locked on his, the “no” turned into a “yes” and she crooked a beckoning finger. He picked up his drink and made his way through the clouds and the crowd till she filled his field of vision.

“Hello, handsome,” she said as she gestured at the stool next to hers. He parked his keister on it. “I understand you’re a private peeper, come all the way from New York City just to talk to little old me.”

“I’d have come farther,” he said, “just to get a good look at you.”

“Aren’t you the charm boy,” she said, producing a Kool from her silver handbag. He lit it. She puffed. So did he.

“Actually,” he said, “I’m in town on another case, but when I found out you were here I thought I’d kill two birds with one stone.”

“Good thing I’m not a bird. So what do you want to talk about? Dicky Delgado?”

“I didn’t know you had a mind-reading act too.”

“Mister, if I could read minds I’d be slapping your face right about now.”

He grinned. “Tell me something I don’t know.”

“I know this. Delgado’s in a jam and Barry Bason is defending him and everybody knows you’re Bason’s pet gumshoe. I’m just trying to decide which I like better -- the tall, dark, handsome one or the lighter version. You and Bason are a couple of dolls. Although your pictures in the paper don’t do you justice.”

“Thanks. Neither does yours. And you’re right about Delgado. I’m investigating all his enemies, trying to figure out which one of them framed him.”

She crossed her legs. The oh-so-tight dress parted, nearly up to her waist, revealing the shapeliest shins this side of Betty Grable.

“You think it’s a frame job?” she said.

“Could be.”

“And you figure I might’ve had something to do with it?”

“Did you?”

“Oh come on. Sure, I resented that heel for giving me the boot, but I landed on my feet. In fact, I’m grateful to Dicky for setting me on a new career path. I’m moving up in the world.”

Saul glanced around the small, seedy nightclub. “This path leads up? Looks more like a dead end.”

“Hey, don’t let the decor fool you, handsome. This is one of the top jazz joints in the country and the boss pays a lot better than that skinflint Cuban. And a girl could get noticed here if she plays her cards right.”

“I’ll say.”

“I mean by record producers, smarty. All the big shots stop in here looking for new talent. We’ve already gotten a couple of nibbles.”


“My husband and I. Bobby was the guy tickling the ivories during my number.”

“Quite a cozy arrangement. Was it that way with Delgado too?”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“I wonder if you and Delgado sang a few after-hours duets. And when the lyrics got too hot for Dicky to handle he changed his tune to the wedding ring blues. That casts the brush-off in a whole new light, doesn’t it?”

“Is that what he told you?”

“No, but Bason figures it’s an angle worth pursuing.”

“Which proves that brains and beauty don’t often go together, especially in men.” She blew smoke in his face. “Bason is all wet. And you can tell him so.” She got up off the stool. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go change my tune.”

“Hold on, I’ve got a few more questions.”

Someone tapped him on the shoulder. He turned. Bobby Trope, blonde piano player and annoyed husband, stood behind him, along with a burly bouncer with anchors tattooed on his biceps.

“This quiz show just got cancelled,” Bobby said. “Time to sign off, shamus.”

“Hi, Mr. Trope,” Saul said. “I hear you barely made it back in time for Marilyn’s show last night. Your flight out of New York got delayed due to engine trouble.”

“Who says I was in New York?”

“The girl at the TWA counter at the airport who sold you your round-trip ticket. Why did you go there? To tend to some unfinished business?”

“Unfinished or finished, my business is none of yours.”

“You got something to hide?”

“Nope. I just don’t like nosey questions from private dicks. But I got a question for you. Are you gonna blow this joint under your own power or do you need a little breeze in your sail?”

Saul glanced at the bouncer, then stood up and turned to Marilyn. “Nice meeting you, Miss Leeds.”

“It’s Mrs. Trope to you,” she said. “Now blow.”
(This is an excerpt from my mystery pastiche novella, "The 'I Love Lilly' Murders"

Copyright © Stanley Carter | Year Posted 2016

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The Poetry of Life

I write poems you listen to them
There is no end to this lovely game

You open your window and the birds call 
I open mine and the rainbow-footfall 

I weave a dream, under your umbrella
In the joint shade comes up our villa

You make tea and I fill the cup
Warm bubbles call us to the marble tub

I keyboard in smile, as you whisper words
This way we set free, many lovely birds

You make the clouds and I deliver rain
Dry grassless earth both of us disdain

I raise slogans in the procession
You dream vignettes of the revolution

I am charged under sedition and go to jail
Shadows in the cell make you frail

You fight for freedom and I keep waiting
Sparkle our eyes till our suns are setting

Then there are times when I go right
You choose the left and there is a fight

The windows are closed and the doors shut
The nagging sickening feel lingers in our gut

As the mercury rises the black clouds appear
Rains come down and the sky is clear

You give me words and I write rhymes
Together you and I juggle the balls of time

I play the drum and you march on
You and I go on aeons after aeons
May 12, 2016
Suubmitted to – Any Couplet You Wish II – Poetry Contest
Sponsor: Laura Loo

Copyright © Probir Gupta | Year Posted 2016

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Can You Hear Me Now?

In the Bible the book of James reads like a Shakesperian play
With words that are archaic and not used as much these days
James writes of his concerns about how to lead an ethical life
How one should communicate in order to follow the ways of Jesus Christ
But in society today proper language seems to have gotten lost somehow
Can you understand what people are saying, can you hear me now?
For It's not so much as what you say, but It's how you say it.

Ebonics, street lingo and generation X slang words
It's not so much  about can you hear me, 
but do you understand what you have heard
"Put some frosting on your bling-bling"
Now what in the heck does that mean?

Some rap music isn't so bad, 
If you can comprehend the main point
But most of those songs seem to address violence 
and the gangster life in the joint

We need to set an example with the proper Christian tone
Re-teach the youth of today to communicate
in a language that's not all their own
May God make them the instruments to carry forth His story
Pray that they come to understand the with Him, there Is glory

Can you hear me now? a slogan that Verizon does use
Can you understand me now with the words that I choose?
The diversity in the university
Is just a sign of the individuality
There's nothing wrong with being unique 
and marching to the beat of a different drum
BUt can you hear me now 
and do you understand where I'm coming from?

Copyright © louise nelson | Year Posted 2007

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The Dare

I've been going back
in time for just a bit
Thinking back on my life
those times I had no wit
Being in the eighth grade
I remember all so well
The time I was given a dare
ten minutes before the bell
There was a popcorn maker
that sat just down the hall
The kernels, oil and salt
in our room, we kept it all
I don't remember every detail
just the basic truth
I was dared to snort the salt
and in my blissful youth,
I thought, "Whatever,
it can't be all that bad"
So they laid it on the table
and took a pen from the pad
Pulled out the ink
so now the pen was hollow
I had not the slightest clue
of what was about to follow
I laid the pen before the line
and up my nose it went 
The biggest sting I ever felt 
as my knees slightly bent
I coughed and hacked for a few
my orange nose was surely glowing
Trying to see through watery eyes
I thought my sinuses were showing
As they all rolled and laughed
I took the pen and threw it
Said, "If you think it's that funny,
then one of you do it!"
Just then the room got quiet
could hear a pen drop in the joint
So, a smile fell across my face
as I had just proved my point
Of course they had the right to laugh
my stupidity wasn't their fault
But a lesson learned in school that day
never, ever snort the salt!

Copyright © Alana Tye | Year Posted 2008

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Senate Intelligence

Senate Intelligence 
By Franklin Price

Senate intelligence, not so sure I saw today.
Those words an oxymoron for what I heard some say.
Do not become political, I heard the chairman speak.
Some of them would not comply, their minds were just too weak.

I'll not point my fingers, not be specific in my point.
If you watched, you may agree, there were non-listeners in the joint,
that thinly veiled or blatantly, proudly took their party's side
I saw again the sad state we're in, “You did not listen”, is what I cried.

You had a chance to clear the air through a fine upstanding man 
That he was canned by the president, of that I'm not a fan
I think he has integrity and he did his job too well
Tried to be all to everyone. I think that's why he fell. 

Position required arm's length, unbiased and aloof
Made some very tough decisions and it all went through the roof
Stepped on several psycho toes by thinking for himself
Was much too good, thought consequence, and now he's on the shelf.

The FBI director's job should be autonomous
With freedom to investigate all the crime done on the bus
Without the threat of firing, without sufficient cause,
Investigate to solution without oxymoron pause.

It's a shame we don't have Hoover still, who covered his own ***.
Collected trash on everyone, to mess with him must pass
If you tried to take him down, you were likely going too
Then your royal job, upon the hill, would no longer be for you.

There always are temptations to selfishly advance
To give you free vacations, to put money in your pants
You better clean your act up, we the people watching too.
The president got Comey. We don't have to vote for you.

Copyright © Franklin Price | Year Posted 2017

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Not so simple notes


Letting the music flow through me. 
Enveloping me and helping to ease my mind. 
Lightening my spirit and calming my heart. 
Allowing me the freedom to expand my imagination.
 Let the stress of the world slip away. 
Running down my spine to land in my feet. 
Slipping out of me to flow along the floor. 
Gaining a life of its own.
 Starting a strange and new journey
Turning from stress to a multi-colored creature. 
Absorbing everyone's stress and negativity. 
 Feeding off it and turning it to a brilliant display. 
Lightening the mood in the joint.
 Setting toes to taping. 
Hands a twitching. 
Hips moving and bodies grooving.
Notes flow and float in the air.
Energizing the crowd.
To an almost frenzied state.
Working better than any drug possibly could.
Potent and pure.

Copyright © Julie Hosier | Year Posted 2014

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By Franklin Price

Seventeen when will it stop
A traffic jam we need a cop
Too many think they're heaven sent
That they can run for president

Can't get together have a meet
A forum for that mighty seat
If they could just cooperate
They may have stopped at only eight

Another example of their plight
Won't work together only fight
Better soon find where it's at
Or four more years of democrat

Not so many on that side
Just a couple for the ride
Scrambling to present their point
Or maybe end up in the joint

How have the parties come this far
Think they're all drunk just left the bar
That would make a little sense
How else could they be so dense

Hard to decide who gets our votes
They are not lions they're only goats
One will lead us lambs astray
We'll find who it is on voting day

May not like it maybe will
I just know I've had my fill
Of  many posers now hell bent
Who think they can be president

Copyright © Franklin Price | Year Posted 2015

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Poetically Presented Politics

Poetically Presented Politics
By Franklin Price

Poetically presented politics
Is something I find fun
Try not to party orient
Or point to who's the one

Look for funny foolish things
That should not be a point
If not used in the current race
Could put runners in the joint

If half truths got an Oscar
And a sidestep got them two
All would be awarded one
And most of them a few

Copyright © Franklin Price | Year Posted 2016

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In Prison

He had reached his breaking point and had no reason left to live
For he ended up in the joint and twenty years the judge would give
He felt completely alone and his insides were stripped hollow
For his problems had only grown as it was his own demise that he chose to follow

So filled with hate as it overflowed in his cell
For he knew of his fate, he was headed straight for hell
Lashing out at every single chance for that was all he ever knew
Always having his stance but never really holding anything  true

But one day during his daily routine and just out of the blue
A new guard he had never seen said “Could I speak to you”
“I know your anger and sense your pain for I was once in your shoes
“But in the Lord Jesus you could gain while you’re in here paying your dues”

Putting a Bible in his hand and looking him straight in the eye
He said “He will understand if just give Him a try”
Throwing that Bible against the wall and trying to spit in his eye
He said you think you know it all, I wish that you would die

“Read it” he said as he turned to walk away
Saying “For you He has bled and you really need to pray”
With two fist of rage, he yelled and then screamed out
Get me out of this cage, laughing, he said that will end my doubt

Later that night he was unable to sleep
Turning on a little light,he pulled that bible from its heap
And as he read it feeling all of his shame, words clinging to his heart
Till finally he called out His Name and that was only just the start

Out of all those women and men he saw everyday
He never saw him again, that guard who told him to pray
And when he did finally inquire as to where he had went
There was never any such new hire for that was an Angel that God had sent

Copyright © Vincent Flannery | Year Posted 2013

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Pointedly Pertinent

Our mothers warned us not to point 
As early as the age of two.
She told us there are better ways
To insure our own point of view.

Our teacher used a long pointer
To show us where and how to look
And taught us to use a marker
On important points of the book.

One must have a sense of humor
To get the point of a good joke.
Using the pointed end of stick
To make your point, will but provoke.

Point Clear, Point Acme and others
Are the scenic names of some towns.
Living in these points of interest
Will surely bring more ups than downs.

There is nothing more important 
In percentages than the point.
A point criminally misplaced
Might bring you ten years in the joint.

Copyright © Joyce Johnson | Year Posted 2011

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Devil's Concoction

This has brought my express train to a halt. A smoky distillation of barley malt, has me unable to think straight. Here I am in the joint very late. One shot was not enough to sate me; soon there came number two, then three. What first tasted smooth was getting a little rough. The bartender then told me I had enough. He just called a taxi to take me home. Tomorrow, there’s no way I’m going to roam. This booze in the brown bottle put me on the shelf. I swear this stuff was made by the devil himself.

Copyright © Robert Pettit | Year Posted 2012

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That Is My Final Decision

dreams can follow us down to a moment captured in time sub lime
in a moment exposed to the message of tender love from a hand up above
we each go through things another door bell rings the bird begins to sing
caught up in a moment captured in time we shall climb up the mountain of faith where
mountains are moved through the darkness of the valley of hate its are fate
don't try to over react we get toseed to and from one heart soars while the other burns
Compton Heights driving my Camry at night streets without lights looking for a fight
fly away to a world wear hearts are pure their door is always open easy as you are coping
Dreams are made of certain times like these start spreading its disease knocked to your knees...
built to the point to the point no faking sucker m.c.'s frying it up with bacon
Uconn parties as a sing along in their jungle room news of class ending soon
bust up the move we sure improve going to put you all in a good mood
Drake is no fake as I take the rhymes deep so I creep to the floor with a two bit whore
Trials by fire burning it up with rhymes that flow from my head down to my toe
Streets are someone enemy but they say they want to friend me it won't be long you see
Rap is the game you got to plant your seed deep into it will yield a great crop you lone cop
homeboy do think a lot about the rise of Eminem homeboy just scored a perfect ten
kick it up with harmony Marshall Matthers new C.D.  got to listen to its sweet melody
Larmar in the joint he on point taking you much higher then ever before
sometimes pink don't think just do as she feels like it's all a game no big deal
got me behind the sqeaky wheel playing one last game of Let's Make A Deal

Dr. Dre may not have to much to say these days free styling at best put to the test
what is this   world coming to as you spray your perfume in the room 
some say life is a contest but i have to put that to rest its all a big test
to see what you have inside beneath the heart you will make a brand new start
blowin up raps is the task that will last star blazing streams down to your means
Streets will either make you or break you just like they did Pac & Biggie a big mystery
No, you got me in the game i maybe shooting up flames but in the end I'll be brave
Keeping my head up to the sky not looking for a drive by or a shot to the eye
preachers keep preaching while teachers keep on teaching
what one sews will they reap in
That's My Final Decision

Copyright © Mario Vitale | Year Posted 2017

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New Beginning Page 2b

Lord Proposes

Determination we all must show
If The Power Of Love we wish to grow
Mother Earth needs us all to say
Forgive Us Mother Earth today
A Spark Of Faith we need to find
Be The Witness to all mankind
In Hopes Valley the lord proposes
Looking to the future led by the resilient Roses

Really Think

Write the epitaph you wish
For when at last you perish
Say all the good about you
For that's what you’re meant to do
For others will not be so nice
As they vilify you once or twice
If only a fly upon the wall
At your funeral you could hear them all
Saying what they really think
As tongues are loosened on the drink
No matter what they say for sure
Cannot hurt you anymore

Athens Greece

Snow has arrived in Athens Greece
Guarding The Rooftop Garden a fleece
Dancing Nymphs provide Snows Kiss
Roses Agony hard to miss
No Love Affair in Snows Embrace
Yet Winters joy lights up the place
In the snow, flowers play Hide And Seek
Beauty's Determination strong not weak

God’s Love

We all must start Fighting Cold
As this world of ours grows old
In Defying Winter we will survive
If Keeping Lords Creation Alive
We will find The Gates Of Wisdom flung open wide
His Creation will no longer hide
The Epitome Of Creation Beauty
To follow Divine Design a duty
If Gates Of Wisdom be mine to pass through
It will only happen with Gods love it's true

Dan Is Back

Well it's two thousand and seventeen
Dan is back he's seasoned not green
For the world of crime has an under belly
You won't find me hiding behind the telly
The Villaville bank has been held at gun point
That's why Dan Drakes on the job not a plod in the joint
Fear not dear rhymer's my guns at the ready
While the plod are home in bed with a teddy
I'll wrap up this case in the wink of a private eye
For it's me holding up the bank I'll tell you why
The queue I did not want to jump but I just couldn't wait
I'm being served now ain't that just great

Copyright © Owen Yeates | Year Posted 2017