E-Mail   by Willie Christopher Tucker   Bio/Address

The dandelion grows
in the seam of a busy walkway
reaching upward
    out of hardened concrete.
Though considered a nuisance.
    A weed, poisoned, trampled-on
        and uprooted.

It perseveres --
Like the youth that grows
    in the underbelly of society's cities
        turbulent streets
rising up, rising upward
through the concrete jungle of the
government >p-a-r-tments
having no fear!

Stop running from the voices --
there is no escape.
The echoes of police sirens
gunshots ring out
AK-47, Desert Eagle --
Block 9 and Mac 10
Destroying precious lives before they begin.

The blood spills on the hardened concrete
fertilizing the roots of the flower
    that grows beneath.
A weed, poisoned, trampled-on
and uprooted - lives on
The dandelion yet
        Lives on.


Commentary by Author

Some people ask me, "Willie, why does your poetry always reflect images of the Ghetto - the streets?" I look at them and simply reply, "What would you have me write about? Machiavellianism, unintelligible things, Unitarianism or Wall Street?" For me the answer is quite simple! I write about the ghetto experience because it makes perfectly good sense to me. It is where I come from. It is who I am. Although I seek more experiences to help me define who I truly am, I'll never forget my beginnings. I'm just like the flower, the dandelion, everyone considers a weed. It gets sprayed with herbicides and it keeps coming back. It gets pulled up and walked on and it keeps coming back! Despite relentless attempts to terminate its existence, the dandelion should be allowed to grow and so should I. Neither of us is a weed. We're simply misunderstood. The poem The Urban Rose is written as a dedication to all who have had to overcome the many obstacles and stumbling blocks of life. To endure, regardless of society's perceptions of the perfect model. We are all different, free spirited, free willed and we all possess a beauty which is truly unparalleled.

More Poems by Willie Tucker this issue:

Land Where My Fathers Cried

Two Special Umbrellas

Mysteriously The Pen Speaks

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