At the Boogie Down Grind,
by natalie n. caro
The new urban strategists call our community centers
shabby, say we need to be more classy, more savvy;
say we need to sell out
to move on up, town.
So they construct 33 floor condominiums were the hotspots
used to be, coffee shops on la esquina and art studios with
pedigree in the building replacing quinceañeras y bautizos
with Cafe au Lait, with Cabernets, with Baroque.
Once children of this place, the /newly converted/
come hungry to sever whatever remains of the past.
Dust pan and ivy league degree in hand, they
they draft award winning concrete plans.
Hear ye, Hear ye, our saviors holding legal letter pads
Arrive! They’ve come to tell us to stop being victims.
“Start your own business, get off government aid,”
pockets Fresh-Direct ly filled.
How simple a solution! Of course! How could we
not have thought of this before? All it ever took was
a pulling of the straps on a boot. A tugging at strings
with more vibrato,
to make us less po/ur.