Stella

Faded speedbumps test the shocks

A hot day but not as hot as normal

Early sun rays 

     caught in cloud waves 

     of dust; kicked up

     by pit bulls racing behind a chain link fence

A fat white man in a Hillis jersey with a Polar Pop; 

     Peyton Hillis but not when he was cut by the Giants

          or by the Bucs

          or the Chiefs

          but when he was the Madden 12 cover player

So much dust kicked up

Saladitos stuck

     in lemons claw their way into the mouths

     of brown kids on new bikes

A meth-head sleeps on a realtor’s face

A pair of busted, blue chucks run over too many times to know

     find shelter in the shade of an 8 inch curb

A foreclosed middle school better kept then expected glides past

Two fat coyotes gait by with bellies full of lost cats

Now, when that school was open

     and had 8th grade girls with tummies heavy from unborn babies

     and magazine drives and I had blue-banded braces

     there were Eastside B-K tags on the walls

     but not anymore

     when everyone left they must have cleaned it all up

That Philippino family’s been here for years;

     scaring off the javelinas scrounging in tipped over green garbage bins

An ice cream man drives by

          and a flash of sticky lucas at the bottom of tiny plastic baby bottles

          and melted Sonic the Hedgehog ice cream bars with frozen gum eyes 

               that looked in all directions

               at the army brats and dark men with Korean wives

               and that Black kid with bright blue eyes that smell like cat piss every time

               we played Shaq Fu and Mario Kart and Golden Eye

               and his brother that taught us how to do gang signs

               and my dad would try to scare me to stay inside

               first with stories of La Llorona 

                    but then, later, with news reports of drive bys

A childhood of dirt bikes; and gun shots

An American flag flies high over a corner house

     just under it a flag with a Block A and the words "Bear Down!" 

Two young Mexican kids play soccer in their backyard

     kicking up so much dust

Their 3 year old sister in just a pink skirt

     carries her 4 month old baby brother

A Loews branded boxed shed in the neighbor’s yard

An old woman tends her garden

The kids yell at her in Spanish

She laughs and sprays them with water

Even though it's less hot here in Autumn