Night Funeral

by Jéanpaul Ferro

I left the urban death of Flint, Michigan U.S.A. the other
day, all the doorknobs of the abandoned buildings gone
missing, removed like no one is ever coming back;

the calcified glass of shattered telephone booths
everywhere, flowers and weeds growing right through
the pavement, tall factories shuttered closed, apartment
buildings bordered up, vacant skyscrapers waiting for
some eternal spring to come,

on Hand-to-Mouth Street there are crack addicts who look
like literal zombies, the skeletons of old box-stores sit there
like burned out relics from a by-gone era,

haunted neighborhoods without a neighbor, gray bungalows
completely naked, shadow-lands everywhere the blue eye turns
to look along an avenue of empty brick row houses,

cars sitting there on innocent streets without tires, hoods,
trunks, or windows,

kids waiting on bleak street corners for something to break,
something to give,

I ask you:

is this America? is this another planet? is this a world
full of lost winters and masks? is this the constitution
of the greatest country in the world?

The Protocols of Torture

Jéanpaul Ferro's picture

A 10-time Pushcart Prize nominee, Jéanpaul Ferro’s work has appeared on National Public Radio, Contemporary American Voices, Columbia Review, Emerson Review, Connecticut Review, Sierra Nevada Review, Portland Monthly, Rattle Magazine, Arts & Understanding Magazine, and others. He is the author of All The Good Promises (Plowman Press, 1994), Becoming X (BlazeVox Books, 2008), You Know Too Much About Flying Saucers (Thumbscrew Press, 2009), Hemispheres (Maverick Duck Press, 2009) Essendo Morti – Being Dead (Goldfish Press, 2009), nominated for the 2010 Griffin Prize in Poetry; and Jazz (Honest Publishing, 2011), nominated for both the 2012 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Prize and the 2012 Griffin Prize in Poetry. He is represented by the Jennifer Lyons Literary Agency. Website: * E-mail:

Last updated August 30, 2011