driving home from work
down a street
not mine
stopped at a light

pretty eyes in a seven year old face
selling m&m’s car to car
i’ll pass today
but will say yes tomorrow
not because i want the candy
but because he wants to give me something solid
in exchange for my two dollars
please be careful of the traffic
angel boy

next block
women and children in front of an apartment building
on folding chairs in the heat
shouted conversations
braid my hair mommy?
get over here, now!
i told him no but he still keeps callin’.

next corner
young handsome men
up to no good
clandestine glances
dark business
i avoid eye contact,
look nonchalant
wait for the light to change

now down the road
across the street
an old woman
lovingly tends her flowers
in a concrete planter
tucked between her driveway
and her neighbor’s
bright daisies
yellow as the sun
dancing against the backdrop
of blacktop and wrought iron

six blocks in newark
listening to the stones:
if i don’t get some shelter
oh yes i’m gonna fade away
love, sister,
it’s just a kiss away