Monday Jul 16

ShawnHamptonPic Shawn Hampton is currently an undergraduate Creative Writing student at Florida State University. Fall 2012 will be the start of his third year at FSU where he has studied poetry with writers such as Rebecca Lehmann and David Kirby. He has also had experience writing in other genres such as fiction and screenwriting.
---------




Go Play in Traffic
 
 
While the other boys were out
swinging for the fences
of their father’s battered dreams,
our man was working the streets;
playing red rover red rover
 
please don’t run me over
with body-waxed range rovers
and naturally-blended taxi cabs
because he never learned the chorography
required to catch a curve.
 
But man, could he move. Every morning
he played that four-way intersection
like a game of four square.
He jumped over the bumpers
of imported jalopies,
played duck, duck, goose
with the hoods of luxury sedans,
did pirouettes around PT cruisers;
knew the sideline boundaries,
the safe zones,
like a good QB.
 
He could have gone straight to the league
if there were one. Instead
he grew proportional to a size L
shirt of a coffee shop his father
was a regular at in his younger years,
simply because there is no better job for a broken man
than to break change for double shots of espresso
behind counters he buffed every day after hours.
 
And when he finally called it a day,
after the last penny had been checked present,
he would cross the street
that he had been staring at all day
through the shop windows;
the same intersection where his father
was found engaged in a game of twister:
left hand on green,
no right on red,
racing to king his crowning child.