Certain Ways

Certain Ways

A Poem by jacob erin-cilberto

Certain Ways


there is an old coon dog
on a rickety porch

deep South
up a tree
hiding
the bandit faced prey growls
with an empty belly

it's that word
doesn't need to be in plain view
the scent is strong

it's a feeling
a gesture
a failure

the compass points true North
but what is true about it

the map is still upside down
and coordinates are irrelevant.


4/25/21

© 2021 jacob erin-cilberto


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Hello, Jacob! :)
My family lived in Mobile for a year, when I was about ten years old, around 1990. The racism there would sort of seep out of normal people, not really hateful, more a bizarre rule of etiquette. From there, we moved to the far south suburbs of Chicago. Some of the towns there had been set up as planned integrated communities. I remember my high-school class was about half white, the rest mostly black, with some hispanics, and one or two Asians. I remember the cafeteria there had round tables that seated about ten students each. At lunch, some of those tables would be full of only blacks, others only whites, or only hispanics; race was meaningful to those students, how they identified themselves; but most of the tables sat a mixed group of kids. When I grew up, and explored the city, I saw the different ethnic communities. They came to mind a couple months ago, when I heard a comedian from Atlanta suggest that the north is more racist than the south, because in the south there are only black people and white people, but in the north there blacks, whites, hispanics, Greeks, Italians, Germans, puertoricans, mexicans, and so on. I really enjoyed the ironies in the joke.


Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

Thank you for sharing this, Matt.
j.
brilliant jacob ... yep. instilled habitual thought and speech patterns cause slippage .. sometimes meant but in these super sensitive and angry times ..far more times unintentional .. time to move on says i .. in fact way past time to move on ... our Country has grown and changed ... the only restrictions one has these days are those placed upon themselves says i .. if the "bully" is too big to handle we have all kinds of larger recourse for the "little guy" ... i am lucky tho .. i have never been burdened with the desire to be rich, famous nor powerful ... put food ont the table ... have a table .. and keep it all dry and warm is riches enough ... but that's me ... and i'm stickin' to it! ;)
E.

Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

Yep, I just want those same things.
never needed a bunch of possessions or money.
and .. read more
Einstein Noodle

2 Weeks Ago

;)..........................
Ah yes; the deep south, but ,in fact, everywhere now. This shows me of what went on in the deep south, and may still go on today, the prowling, the scent, the angry feelings, the K.....the hate, the racial tension, slavery form long ago, it all boils down to a divide; a class of people who have been trodden down for so long... you're right, just your words shows us what's happening in the real world. It's terrifying
Great poem,
Best, B.

Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

Yes, terrifying...and then there are so many who respond by saying they are sick of the demonstratio.. read more
The old South....I still remember the first time my parents and I drove from NJ to FL. I saw a lot of little shacks on the side of the highway. I asked if anyone lived there. My parents explained that there were slaves in those shacks in years gone by. I asked why in the world anyone would want to own a person. My parents did not have an answer. The attitude of the old South is sadly still around...and, yes, the map as well as the world is upside down. Lydi**

Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

thank you for your understanding and sharing your story, Lydi.
j.
A day dream to yesterday. Even if we stand that same piece of ground only our memory can take us there, one more time. Strap on our thinking caps for one more visit.

Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

I hope those thinking caps work better than the last ones we wore...I appreciate your words, Cherrie.. read more
Cherrie Palmer

2 Weeks Ago

lol yes I hate when we wear the ones with rabbit ears and my vertical hold is shot.
Jacob. I read this poem, a few times now. The first time. I read it quickly. The second time. I read it steadily. Then I read it a third time and noticed, there’s no punctuation. Not a bad thing. In fact. For me it was a good thing! I totally love playing with words. And I’m by far, not a good writer. He’ll... I don’t even know how to write a complete sentence, let alone punctuation and read the words written correctly.

Your poem (First that I’ve read of yours) made me realize.

Slow down. Take your time. And read the words. The lines and pay attention to the showing vs the telling.

As of late. I’ve been studying a lot of (Show vs Tell) not as easy as it sounds. The placement of words and the texture of the scenes being shown.

I really liked this. I could see and feel the picture of what you have written.

Thank You for sharing.

Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

thank you for your very kind review, Arthur. And I disagree with your self-assessment. You are an e.. read more
That final couplet so powerful. I got the feeling that this poem is about racial tension. The compass is there for direction, but it ain't working.

Chris

Posted 2 Weeks Ago


jacob erin-cilberto

2 Weeks Ago

somebody is holding onto the needle....thank you, Chris. I appreciate you.
j.

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Added on April 26, 2021
Last Updated on April 26, 2021

Author

jacob erin-cilberto
jacob erin-cilberto

Carbondale, IL



About
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..

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