Reading about the Victorian Holocausts, peasants of Deccan India on rations
(lower by 125 calories/day than Buchenwald) in the workfare camps of cholera
and the Raj on the train I start praying for the people of Yemen and Sudan
the tens of millions of people in refugee camps and lining the long borders
of North and South Mexico, N. Africa’s coast, the hastily fenced off entrepots
of Europe where tens of millions of refugees flee the forever wars, the famines
the climate change induced famines in Africa, the Middle-east, Central America
exacerbated by U.S. regime change operations in Libya, Honduras, E. Europe
in Syria and Iraq we are dancing on the tectonic fault lines of those nuclear wars
with N. Korea and Iran sitting on top the biggest financial bubble of stocks, bonds,
real estate and bitcoin ever in the history of the commercial whirling whorl world
poof! pop! pop! I come up out of the train and up the escalator and before I go
to meet the Black Seed Writers I cross Tremont St. to check my work of yesterday
which I expect to be washed away in the fine winter mist but instead there it is
my last labyrinth still there more vibrant than yesterday when I revivified its
chalk colors deep scarlet reddest red and pink startling as a little girl’s vision and
orange streaking alive as lightning and deep yellow of Spring portent blossom
that rises from just a glimpse of green just a quick dip of dark blue and, yes, yes
lavender edged with a line of purple all glistening under the fine winter mist
still there, still there …


James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop, which his Labyrinth titled poems are based on. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.