Marcus Anderson is a poet/visual artist who was born in Kingston Jamaica. He has lived in the Capital Region since the age of 2, and has been involved in some form of the arts for as long as he can remember.

Marcus has been a featured reader at “Alchemy of the Word,” at the Lionheart Cafe, The Lark Street Book Store, School of Night, Live from the Living Room, VoX, and Changing Spaces art gallery. He also doesn’t like to write bio’s about himself… he really doesn’t… the poems are the bios.

 

POEMS

 

SAXOPHONE LOVE JONES

listen…
u hear that?
..the blues,
sound sad to u?
SAXOPHONE LOVE JONES

if u can’t hear the blues
i feel sad for u

i am the blues
american made hue
often misconstrued
candy yam jams soul food
the setter of moods
emotion in the nude

i got a jones
for the saxophone’s moan
and the heartache
that becomes a beat break

staggering staccato
voice of vibrato
later for whiskey
i get tipsy off of pain
poured into pianos

ivory & ebony
keys
together making melodies
we may never see
in society
sistas sing my life
into mics
strummin’ my name
…my pain
to maintain the flame
oblivious to monetary gain
soul became the main aim

don’t call me sad
the blues is true
the blues is

Black
Life’s
Undying
Essence in
Song

preserved
prolonged on wax
hopped the turnstile
rode the coltrane for a while
while u cried for me i smiled

not sad. just true
the blues is in the boondocks
the blues is on the block
i am the blues
and i’ll excuse
if u cant read my hue

 

SNOW ON THE CITY

i’m snow on the city
when the sky shines at night
and everything seems alright
for the time being

time,
being the elusive lover
that she is, slipping
through my fingers
forever fleeing

and quiet as it’s kept,
sometimes, behind closed doors
i cry… just to remind myself
that i’m a man

but being that i’m a man
i usually don’t let
the saltwater see the light
of day… so i cry in ink
on napkins and loose-leaf

but i’ve grown sick

sick of writing eulogies
to deceased babies
swallowed by the streets
sick of writing
unanswered letters to “the man”
sick of rants
sick of trying to paint the sun
on this cloud-covered land
sick of tears
sick of bleeding blue
on pages

so today…
i’m just snow on the city
when the sky shines at night
and everything seems alright
for the time being

 

LOVE ON THE C TRAIN

baby, i’m a dreamer…
even in spite of the fact
that i don’t sleep

maybe you won’t weep
if i pass tonight
i’d like to think
that i’d be the crescent
on your lips
ear to ear beaming
like 7am sun fingers
lingering thru the blinds
giving birth to sight

and even though you’d miss the shell
you’d take comfort knowing that
i’d now dwell amongst the rest
of the universe’s music
and you know i’d probably
feel like coltrane
in your veins
making brass cry
puffy cheeked
nappy headed
afro glow
warming the flowers
in the head of lady-day
who is finally free
of the venom in her veins

half of my heroes
were jazzy cats and birds
and 3 quarters of them ended
in tragedy or was it that
they began fresh in tragedy
shedding flesh and tragedy
to magically dance
through time long after
legs have rotted away
and horns no longer play

do you recall the day
when we first bumped into
one another on the C ‘Trane
you dropped your grocery bag
full of dreams
and i bent down to help you
pick them up begging your forgiveness
and i was answered by that
crescent that
i wanted to be so badly
i remember…
i took that day
and hid it in a cowry shell
one that i wear in my locks
to keep close to
my thoughts

so if tomorrow i’m no more
know that i’ll be much more
and take that shell
from my head
holding it to your ear
and you’ll see me
you’ll be me
and i you

and i’ll be the Trane
in your veins

baby, i’m a dreamer
holdin’ a love too supreme
to name

 

ABSORBTION

i’ve really begun to loathe
self-absorbed poetry
so i wrung out my sponge
praying that the last supper
of pity parties has been
flung from my lungs
i breathed deep and exhaled up
unaware that my pen
lurking behind me
mopping up the muck

 

LIVE LOVE

to state the obvious
life is
to be lived

the sky
to be
contemplated
admired
while clouds
are counted

children
grinning
singing
spinning
yarns

dizzy
school yard
barbs
forgotten

the next day
they play
as if
yesterday
never stung
and storm clouds
never hung

the concrete
is alive
the fields
kiss the skies

life is
to be lived

living is
to love

love is seen
clearest
in the eyes
of those
you would
die for

the ones
who make
life worth
living

for them
we state
the obvious

life is
to be lived

living is
to love

 

EIGHT

eight hours or more
of every twenty-four
spent scratching at the door
blending, bent and endless
incensed by the senseless
suits hovering, buzzing
granite faced defenses
push papers expressionless

office politics tic-toc
thoughts remain gridlocked
the clock turns heavy handed
free logic reprimanded
Lord grant us reprieve
from the hold of thieves
i’ll reply to my own pleas
once i recall the answer

smuggling pens
as creative contraband
laying freedom train tracks
by my own hand
plotting better tomorrows
painting a broad sky
and drawing feathers to fly
finally realizing my wingspan

writings stashed abruptly
upon overseer’s approach
reflecting ancestors ghosts
i must escape the past
i am stronger than this
but 9-5 is complicated math
minutes burn as i relearn
not to block my own path

 

FREEDOM

freedom is the complete
and unfettered recognition
of the oneness of one’s heart percussion
and that which rises from drum skins

freedom is nakedness
refusal of the wretched robes
which often clothe deadened souls
lost desire is no longer the attire

freedom can never be purchased
nor can it be granted or handed
over via proclamations signed or
spoken on land which was stolen

freedom is at odds with the dollar

until the road of freedom
is one walked by all
we can never truly
rest in clean conscience

until your plight is my plight
until our light is their light
until we discard our arms
and her fight is his fight

until every river of discontent
flows in unison pushed powerfully
through tributaries, carried to one
expansive and knowing ocean

until we discard our stubborn eyes
and learn from the pages of the past
until we begin to build the world
which our dear children deserve

until the expanse between what is
and what ought to be vanishes
until we free freedom from
the insincere realm of propaganda

until these things come to pass
none of us will be free

true freedom waits to be claimed

live for it
or die for it
if need be

 

SINNER’S HANDS

Hands of the sinnerman
mishandle the futures
of seeds yet unseen

run to the rock
holding hot weaponry

isolated missteps leave
fickle fortunes in jeopardy

kleptocracy
crippled morality
dime store demagogues
pouring tainted tea

shotgun wedding
heaven’s heavy
run down
come up
amerika
bloodlust
blood let
transit cop
suspect
bay area
unrest
state induced
hysteria
slugs bless

metal clap
thunderous
unjust
righteous rain
guns rust
rise again
rise the same
as whence
you came

hunger pangs
they blur reality
nothings changed
the dollar atrophies
mint crumbles
stench rise
concrete jungle
the lion hides
poachers lurk
they covet hides

run to the sea
see it boil
no escape
poison soil
toil    work
calloused hands
go berserk
tax the worker
breaks for despots
corporations
exist as people?
follow demons?
must be dreaming

must be dreaming
must be dreaming
must be dreaming

run to the Lord
to slide a bribe
beg for shelter
salty eyes
oh sinner man
can’t buy everything
card denied
blood diamond ring
keep your baubles
cash is NOT king

cash is not king
cash is not king
cash is not king

georgia listen
listen please
hear the pleas
amidst your
poplar
strange fruit
trees

justice
none
clock is
done
hour 11
no mourning
this morning
time for movement

death row
no solace
a man
touches
niece’s hand
for the first time
through metal
as his time
dwindles

witnesses recant
coerced words
guilt
innocence
rendered
irrelevant
different day
same song
familiarity
frustration
lives destroyed
I am troy

I am troy

in search of justice
none discovered
the law
selective
slippery
truth bends
energy never
ends

truth be told
we’re all doing life
with a death sentence
just understand
that life is endless
on that day sinner man
will you beg repentance?

will you beg repentance?

sinner man you ought to be praying
we ought to be praying

we ought to be praying