The winter of my youth was always blue and vacant.
Dim and neglectful, the sun veiled his secrets,
Forgetting about me – the summer boy.
Instead, the moon was my blue sun.
Funny that the moon shines brighter on a winter’s night,
Than the sun on a winter’s day.
In the day snow is tinted in a powder blue.
But at night the blues are richer, quieter, lonelier.
On those nights,
I would stand in the middle of a field,
A baseball field hidden underneath the snowdrifts.
I stared beyond the thinning film of boyhood into crisp constellations of midnight blue.
I searched to see where my whys would go.
I thought they would find their way to the sun,
Where he was warming the faces of other lost boys like me.
I waited for an answer in the winter blue.
As I looked back at my juvenile footprints in the moonlit snowpack,
Bordered in a blue so restless,
Formed by the weight of my precocious feet,
The unsatisfied prints deepened with each returned why.
Double Dutch don’t mean much
Jumping rope cla-clack clu-clutch
The sistahs smacking gum and such
To pass the summer heat’s wry touch.
The metronomic rhythm rides
The inner city’s fateful tides
As the Double Dutch ropes fly
See which sistah bids her byes
Jump in jump out the timing goes
Like so many of her urban woes
The brothas say they work they hoes
They aint be frontin I suppose
Two ropes determine who can stay
That’s how the Double gets his way
The Dutch alliteration play
Means sistahs let chance have its say
The game of risk is what’s at stake
In sex and love that lovers make
The girl’s virginity he take
It flares on concrete watch it bake
She falls into the playah’s trap
The ropes collide and sting and wrap
She aint about to take this crap
When he stops her with a slap
The next girl pauses before jump
Will she avoid the natal bump
That threatens from the double hump
Will Double Dutch ropes make her gump
And from my flat I watch it all
One rope of pride, one rope of fall
The ritual of summer’s call
Still preys upon young sistahs y’all
See DD is a brother’s game
The sistahs chide that it’s to blame
Both sexes playin all the same
Like timebombs bout to trip
Ruben Guzman completed an M.A. in English and M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Chapman University. He currently resides in Orange County, California, and is a community college Registrar. The Fountain in Forsyth Park is his first novel.