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poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the tag “black sheep”

self-identifying object


at a loss for words
I take my mind far away
listening to ocean waves I once visited
when I was a child

as a child I often told myself
I’d been here before
but the people surrounding me
seemed so strange
as if they somehow didn’t fit

I never did quite fit
into this world I was born
like a castaway or black sheep
I often found myself drifting
into no man’s land
telepathically following
the third brightest object in the sky
only I could see




june two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

a matter of black and white


he said she was dying
though it was not the first time
and by the time I got there
everybody had left

gone dancing they all did
as I would come to later understand
once re-released from custody

madonna had been dead for years
I tried to explain to anyone
(who would listen)
but I could go no further
having sworn allegiance to silence

I am certain I was framed
but unable to present proof
other than once a black sheep
always an easy target





june two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

somebody’s going to die in the land of fools


tower guards flash spotlights
across the desert sky filled with zeppelins
searching for someplace to hide

the wreckage in the field goes unnoticed
for nearly a fortnight

by the time help arrives nothing is out of place

ever since
black sheep wander the land of fools
where someone is certain to die
any given night
slaughtered by supersonic streams of consciousness
running artificial red lights


may two thousand fourteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

forgotten son


close your eyes and pretend
you are the forgotten son
pretend you have lived
a solitary life
and there is no place
you’ve never gone

I did as she said and found
myself on a deserted
divided highway
my overheated imagination
in my rearview
not an oasis in sight

after day turned into night
all living creatures
converged by land and air
giving guidance
and instilling wisdom
to the forgotten son


october two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Researching the Madness


The lines go back far they do
lines drawn on a map
from somewhere in Pennsylvania
via Antwerp and Brussels.

The little girl grew into an iron-fisted
Matriarch who rang the bell at five
to feed her boys the holiest of bread
while reciting hymnals of fear and guilt.

Her shepherdless husband
followed her trail to Illinois
to a sleepy town her brother first discovered
years before boarding SS Vaderland.

It was there tempers raged within
from the ethnically charged populous
but she managed self-restraint
and seldom raised her hand
against her own Motherland.

But for her brother the chains broke
and wickedness unleashed itself
on Christmas Day
as the quietness of the neighborhood
exploded with a single shot of insanity.

That dying branch still hangs crooked
on the corner of Rose and Lexington
its venomous DNA lingering
inside a sleepy little child.



february two thousand thirteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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