we gentrify the block,
bring wedding planners
and poetry readings
to the north lime
prostitutes. pimp &
police officer alike
can get eyebrows arched
for the cost of a decent
car payment / the joint,
as they say, jumpin’…


meanwhile, but much later,
the mayor of eddie street
asks how much of
an avocado toast
he can get for a buck,
“less than a buck’s worth.”
so he settles on a cup
of ice and drops a dime
into the tip jar / goodwill,
for what it is and all…


ever see a white family’s
collective eyes bulge
out of face when entering
a gentrified space
full of black people?
the shelves closest them
in the bookstore
become a no-fly zone;
“can i get a brownie
and a small force field
with my flat white?”
– hipsters on safari.


even the transient cling
to privilege when the coffeeshop
is black-owned (a metaphor
for whose lives really matter);
i guess it’s a form
of ‘public service’
we provide, granting
the homeless a fleeting flash
of dignity / looking down
on the dark skin in remberence
to The Greatness of Ol’ Glory,
all for the tiny cost
of a plastic cup of water;
a small price to pay, i suppose,
in the “grander scheme”…