Poetry by Charles Joseph


You speak shame of my shoes
Criticize its components and origins
You have not walked an inch in em’

Have you worn my skin?
Have you beat under the sun in them?
You shun upon my life for
The struggles you’ve cursed me in
Yet you wear my golds and diamonds,
With pride. Mimicking my lustrous hide

Have you what it takes to tie my laces?
Tap along with my dances.
Have you trumpets blasting
The fascinations of a great culture
In your voice?

Do you carry rainbows at your fingertips
To bless each person you meet
With sunshine that never sleeps
From the Motherland?

By which right in this world
Do you take a whiff of my goods
Then claim it as yours?
What fuels your hate?
Are you embarrassed by how I zig
When you expect me to zag?

You think you’re so big
But right along greatness I will tag

Until your tics
Stop forging my tocs
And block my timeless shine,
I will rise with pride!
On currents,
On tempests,
With halos crowning my pupils
And fire to fill my relentlessness.

So no, Kendrick Lamar, I am not gonna be alright!
These chameleons wear my skin,
My hair, my vibes…my culture.
Then get praises

While I,
I get oppressed for wearing my skin,
My hair, my energy, my culture
And commuting with elegance
In my shoes.


9 responses to “Shoes”

  1. Great work, Charles. I hope you’re well.

    1. Wow! Hey Matt!!! It’s been a while. I’m doing good! I’ve emailed you but I haven’t received any answer–are you alright? How’s the family?

      1. Oh man!! I don’t have that email. I’m so sorry! I would have replied. We are good. Hunkered down. What about you? My thoughts are with NYC.

        1. I’ve sent you two. That’s quite strange. But anyways, I’m doing well. I’m quarantined and haven’t seen the sky in days, but at least now I have some time to post and write more–which I am grateful for!

          1. That is so frustrating. I’m so sorry. Can you email me now as a test please. I’m going to reply with my cell number. We can text and not have emails go missing.

            1. Okay I’ve sent you an email!

              1. I’ve just replied with my #. Please let me know if you receive the email.

  2. Wonderful. It really rings

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