Safety Troubles

Playing safety for the skins. Against Minnesota, a fast running-back, 21, does well by approaching the line and doing a little out pattern and going all the way with no one covering him. After the first time this happens, I make a mental note to cover him on the line when he does this. It happens again. I don’t understand why the coach doesn’t say anything about this dangerous play. The play happens three times, each time I’m caught off guard. These scores resulting in an embarrasing loss.

Next week we are playing Phily. At one point, the coach does mention the danger of that play to me and I tell him I’m plan to cover him (him??, we are playing a different team??) exclusively on plays like that one. I’m careful to put on my cleats. We walk up to the stadium. We listen to the other team do their prep talk just before the game. We try to walk into the stadium. It turns into a Phily metro station just outside the stadium. We have to wait for the subway. I have my shoes and socks in a small, handled paper bag.

We are taking a bus to the game. I don’t have my shoes on.

There is a couple women at the front of the bus. I ask her what she does. “I take care of shoes and manage things,” she says. I tell her I forgot my cleats. She looks at my bare feet. “It’s OK. Play barefoot” she said. “Yes,” I say, “that’s what I plan to do.”

I’m at my parents’ home, eating cereal and either listening to the radio or watching TV. I wonder when I’m going to get my cleats on and go to the game. The announcer says the game is going to begin after these messages. I’m going to be late for the game, and what about number 21??

Evening Recreation

After getting some webbing for my bike at REI, I slowly peddle through the upper-middle-classed people and prim rainbow-cloud shops. Something tells me to go for ice-cream, I peddle back and walk into Ben and Jerry’s; I crush at the cross-branded Lennon “Imagine” logos. I see a hippie tie-dyed-colored, framed print-out saying “If it’s not fun, why do it?” Absolutely, I think, taking a picture of it, and ponder my grandfather’s “If you aren’t having fun, get the hell out of there.”

They don’t have cake cones, so I settle for a waffle cone. They don’t have peach ice-cream, so I settle for Boston-creme. I walk out. Kids are doing karaoke. There isn’t a seat available. I saunter past the lit water fountain that 20 kids are soaking up, as deeply into their souls as as deeply as their clothes are soaked.

I sit down and a baby pit-bull puppy comes up for a pet. After a genuine moment, his owner, a young Asian woman, pulls him away from me and she shepherds his further advances towards me.

I enjoy the cone as I take in the pure delight of running into the water and innocently taking on a song in public. As I leave, a child sings Maria Carey’s Hero and it all hits home for me as I bike off.


Awaken from salvation dreams
the angles cherish you already
know this and flap wings

 There never was a reason
 to forgo this day's
 attendant rejoicing

Troubled Girl

I befriend a young girl. I’m a young boy. I’d like to get into bed with her, to make love to her of course; the emotion is more like a nap or a soul-embrace. She has a terrible secret that prevents this. Some man comes at night. There is fear of his destined approach. We wait together.

There is a box car. Strip away the steel. There are layers and layers of interwoven steel strips lining the car. Strip away the steel. The last layer reveals a platoon of solders cavorting with the girl; she’s helpless among them. They are crude in their jovial taunting. They are all in on it. They all get a piece of her.


Hugging the bottom
 little pebble
 never knew
It could break the surface
 breathe the air
 create waves
and the stream
 would just as well
 pass through