Untitled Poem, by James Lopez-Ericksen

(This poem was written to me by my friend James, after he witnessed a particular exchange I had with my uncle at a church function. Without unpacking all of my personal history, I can say that I found it to be deeply moving and personal. If you know James personally, that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. At any rate, the way these words connected to my past and present was really valuable to me, and helped to compensate for any latent awkwardness over the idea of a dude writing a poem for another dude.)

I remember the days
I’d put on my dad’s
old dress shoes
at Eight, Ten and Twelve

I dreamt of the day
I’d walk in his ways
Then, at Eighteen
I put on those shoes
and wore them till
I had to buy
a pair
of my own.

I say this to you
out of respect of those
who came before you

I’m speaking of the generation
who laid the foundation
for you to
play and rap and sing

This sound booth Those mics
Are yours

Own them
They’re yours

By the way
Love the shoes

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