Concrete Backyard

Sun awakes me through my window. 
I open up my blinds to see,
A crack of sunlight squeezing in trying to find its place between buildings and concrete.
Residue left over from last night’s crack reunion.
Instead of grass and flowers, I see used needles and empty beer bottles.
Garbage piled up, the ghetto doesn’t believe in recycling.
Smells like what I assume is the scent of a dead body.
No birds chirping just rats squeaking.
Hundreds of them fighting to get into the trash bag with last night’s dinner.
Even still I’m afraid of the sight.
How could the sun want to even shine on this rat infested dump?
I hear guy from 5th floor screaming curses at his toddler.
Anger seeps out and travels down to my window.
I wish I could somehow save that little girl from her pain,
But that’s her daddy and it’s none of my business, so they say.
I take out my books, time to study, because I’ll someday leave this place.
Get distracted by the potheads in my backyard talking about “how many bitches they smashed yesterday.”
I try to ignore them, but they’re getting louder.
The smell of weed has traveled up to my window.
I’m thinking of calling the cops but I feel guilty.
These guys don’t know better, they’re victims of their environment, statistics.
Besides I’m indoctrinated to believe that the cops won’t come anyways.
Damn I’ve just spent an hour distracted instead of studying. 
I look outside just to see,
A crack of sunlight squeezing in trying to find its place between buildings and concrete.
Shedding light on the “niggas” smoking weed with the rats.
Illuminating the reality of the lower social economic class. 
Back to my books, time to study.
Like the sunlight I’m stil trying to find my place between buildings and concrete.

Ryssel Guzman's picture

My words are my art because they carry my truths. I am a 22 year old Latina female from New York. I was a poet before I ever knew it. Growing up I would write down rhymes on anything I could find. It was a need I did not quite understand. Poetry has always been my personal tool. My therapy. Now I've gotten to the place where the need is no longer just to write, but to share. Though I am still protective over my writing, I have realized it would be selfish to not share with others. I would deprive people of a chance to feel understood, connected, as I have felt understood and connected. So I share in hopes that my words touch.

Last updated September 08, 2013