Unauthorized Autobiography

Unauthorized Autobiography

A Poem by jacob erin-cilberto


Unauthorized Autobiography



my autobiography began in a Sedgewick Avenue tenement

five stories start the book, Harlem tones flowing



an expressway of keys

busy typewriter banging away on pavement incisions


the cuts in cement skin

the blood coagulating at a Catholic grade school

3 blocks away

learning something about nothing of immediate consequence

a finger caught in the heavy door of an old Plymouth

both of us racing down the street screaming

of patterns in a life of trafficking thoughts


poetry born by single trees 

living on patches of grass

imagining poets dreaming they were 

writing Leaves of Grass and 

becoming mid-nineteenth century Walt Whitmans


free verse child 

unaware that in a few years

he would be moving to a new Country 

called the Midwest---

where the novel would take twists and turns

and Bronx would seem a small prologue


to a screenplay

written from a story

written from a chapter

of a New York boy

living out his days by his typewriter


still hoping those incisions might be sewn

into a new dawn,


but a backlog of dreams

and a rear ended Plymouth

always reject the stitches


and the autobiography

will never heal the scars

of life that flew by so fast

like a body jumping from the roof


of a 5 story apartment building


windows of reckoning

as he reckoned his life

might be worth two short sentences


in a prison of flashback film.





© 2017 jacob erin-cilberto

My Review

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Been away for a while. You're the first to read. Always a pleasure. Never disappointing.

Posted 1 Year Ago

jacob erin-cilberto

1 Year Ago

thank you for your kind words, m.s.
Awe inspiring
In a nutshell brilliant

Posted 1 Year Ago

jacob erin-cilberto

1 Year Ago

thank you for your kind words, Julie.
This is brilliant & revealing & fun to know about you, after all that I've read of you! I'm totally green with envy at the way you stitched together those bright spots & dark spots into the most delicately adorned tapestry. I'm in awe . . . (((HUGS)))

Posted 1 Year Ago

jacob erin-cilberto

1 Year Ago

thank you for your very kind review, barleygirl...

mostly truth here, partly fiction... read more

1 Year Ago

I've written it the way I remember it, in many cases, & this ends up being a number of different poe.. read more
"Poetry born by single trees..living on patches of grass". Sedgewick Avenue by the reservoir- i know this... Incisive, eloquent, spectacular autobiographical chronicle of your roots and influences as a poet. With a Bronx prologue- respect. Love this and certainly identify!

Posted 1 Year Ago

jacob erin-cilberto

1 Year Ago

yes, we were fight next to the Harlem and Major Deegan---a block away and 2 miles from THe Stadium.... read more
Annette Pisano-Higley

1 Year Ago

I actually live about twenty minutes away from where you lived as a boy! Serendipity!:)
A graphically detailed pen picture of the protagonists life. Full of black regrets as memories remind him of the hopes once held but never realised. Deeply sad this one Jacob.

Posted 1 Year Ago

jacob erin-cilberto

1 Year Ago

partly true and partly fiction--as Kris Kristofferson wrote....i like where and how my life has come.. read more

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15 Reviews
Shelved in 1 Library
Added on August 5, 2017
Last Updated on August 5, 2017


jacob erin-cilberto
jacob erin-cilberto

Carbondale, IL

Originally from Bronx, NY, I live in Carbondale, Illinois...teach English at two community colleges and have been writing and publishing poetry since 1970. Friending works two ways. If we have had .. more..