Saturday, August 6, 2011

There Is Always Home

The days no longer dance to the music
of sunshine glimmering to the tone of their
presence and the blue sky has disappeared
in the shade of distilled clouds;
even though time has left me wandering
alone, I know there is always home
Yesterday hasn’t forgotten me as I
still sit at the big oval table (five years Old) watching
Nana cooking a pot of beans on a gas stove
lit by hand and mama is laughing
in the other room as the grown folks
drink their liquor and play a hand of cards.
Granddaddy is staggering on the porch
sipping on his wine and singing along
with Billy Blue Band as the night
howls down onto his drunken delight;
his spirit shining brightly in my eyesight.
Today I look back and I watch, listen
and feel the togetherness
blended in with the joys of family
nurturing my youth into these future days
but they are all gone now; faded laughter has become
just an echo vibrating in an old decaying house;
a portrait re-mastered by the palettes
of my heart.
The night sky no longer shifts with the wave
of the moon and the shadows of the stars
have faded behind the quiet storm
of a memory;
even though time has left me wandering
alone, I know there is always home.

© 2009
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Poetry Birthed Me

Poetry birthed me and left me stranded on the stairs
of literary conception. Exposed to the sunlight of inspiration,
my soul was naked, I had no protection from/ this new world’s
affection. I learned how to walk barefoot on extended metaphors
on the heels of emotional strain/writing away hidden pain,
my days of growth experienced much more than life can explain.

I grew up on a two way street with no shelter from poverty’s rain
but I never allowed it to drench me because my strength
always stayed dry even when I heard single mother’s cry.

Their tears where my motivation to survive
because through a certain amount of years, I wasn’t expected
to be alive, but I continued to strive as to my left/every day
I watched dreams die. I watched them break down on street corners
in the daily hustle of exposed crime. I saw youth taken from
this world too soon as tomorrow’s hope faded
inside a neighborhood addicted to dope.
Every time I thought the desperation was too much to cope
I turned to my right and saw the brighter skies.

There were eyes awakened as artists painting new realities
of imagination. Goals were achieved as souls begin to believe
in the craftsmanship of their expression/there was no more
self-denial or depression in a society filled with a new
determination and aggression. So I decided to take those steps
to the right never forgetting what I was leaving behind
to my left because it was all a part of the becoming of a poet/
it was all necessary in the nourishment of my muse

because poetry birthed me and left me standing as a man
overcoming adversity. It showed me the many ways
we are able to embrace diversity despite differences/despite
the different shades of the worlds we all share. It helped
me grow up and walk through obstacles of fear because there
was a whole new air to breathe just by inhaling the emotions,
the pain, the tears, the smiles and everything that blends
life into poetry.

© 2011
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Rewritten History

Dare we challenge tomorrow’s history
by living today/proud
despite yesterday’s misery; shall we heal
the scars of slavery by understanding
and appreciating our ancestors bravery;

shall we recycle the ink dripping from the pages
of hero’s past; an ink that will outlast
the destruction of our streets where hope
is decaying fast or will we allow all the progress
to eventually fade into a blank sheet
of sacrifices made.

The chains have to be lifted off the brain
and allow our knowledge an escape.
We have to take the torch of might
obtained from years of hard fought civil rights
and write a new text
stamped into tomorrow’s manuscript;
a publication of strength, pride and survival,

and from the shackles of freedoms withheld
to the desegregation of equality victory spelled
from a dream that still breathes
to be upheld to the corrupted streets
where crime and poverty has upheld
we must heal past separation and become a new freedom
of integration as together we will be the transcriptionists
translating today into tomorrow’s rewritten history.

© 2009
© 2010 (revised)
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Thursday, June 16, 2011

On Barbury Lane

The tender nakedness of love’s escape still remained
on the very pathway where the eyes of two lonely hearts
erupted in passion’s flame. And although the moment
could never be the same, the presence of her kiss
still fragrances his name.
They were two well versed souls
bonded by the exploration of connection
as two separated paths on the same road
of reflection discovering an emptiness instantly

by the common touch of emotional surrender.
and now that she’s gone all he can do is
how the temper of her smile acquiesced
the embrace of the poplar trees
and how her golden locks of hair breezed the air
causing him to blanket the ground
with the romance of his knees.
Oh how he use to adore the way her eyes
brought out the glow in sunset skies;
that poetic inheritance of heaven’s surprise
which made her twice an angel
and always there within him at their place
of invention.

A place where he has learned
to walk alone again and a place where
her memory still holds his hand
and as his tears began to rain
he knew they would be forever together
on Barbury Lane.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Sunday, May 22, 2011

One Of Many

I am just one of many experiments who stand alone
in rehearsed crowds lost in a maze
of widowed daydreams
trying to find tomorrow
with transient eyes shut to the reality of yesterday.

It is when I open my mind that I – not only see – but recognize
that I am just one of many questions
who camouflage as the answer trying to find a way out
of the curiosities and possibilities locked and chained
inside the cages of isolated thought
with mental freedom being held hostage by the knowledge

that I am just one of many poets
trying to stand strong against the inertia of time
held back only by fear and the protection
of my own escape - desperate to rise
but sinking in my own environment of unreached
dreams that dangle out of reach but right there
for the taking,

but until I realize
that I am just one of many aspects
in an abstract world, I can only be recognized by literary progression
and the ability to aspirate through the suffocation
of a crowded maze of imitation as one of many
trying to find the correct path towards translation
of the mind and find the focus

to stand tall upon the concrete stairs
of creativity,
because without creative innovation,
a destination to stand apart only justifies
the paths leading to dead ends where possible dreams
remain uninspired.

And without distinction I am one of many poets
translating words into nothing
but just words
sculptured from meaningless expression;
an expression that can only defined
when I find that way towards transcendence
and step away from being one of many
into the spotlight where I am one in many
unlocking the chains of my voice
to become one me

© 2009
Rewritten 2011
Tarringo T Vaughan

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Miss Jackee

She believed in miracles because she lived/a miracle
    and in a dimmed room filled with unfamiliar faces,
the inspiration in her heart glowed and lit up the room
as the bronze of her skin shined brightly within the ambiance
                   of laughter and playful chatter.

There wasn’t a moment her mind didn’t smile;
there wasn’t a moment I didn’t hear her voice
rejoicing in a soulful dialect that had everyone/around her
enthralled in her words. Her cheeks were rosebuds
              blossoming into brownish red every time her
face laughed; a color perfectly matching
the technique of the shawl she wore strategically placed
                around shoulders that once cried.

She was a woman wise with grandeur; a woman
my eyes told me was in her late thirties and life
            placed in her fifties but the spirit of her heart
gave off the magnificence of a woman/ageless.

As she spoke I heard within her tone the voices
               of bravery, sadness, fear, strength, defeat
and hope. She talked about a little boy she was guided/
lost temporary on the wrong path she reached him
and turned him back into the dream he had to be
for in his self believing he would find the structure
                  of achieving.

She talked and laughed about her days in the projects
and how togetherness was formed despite
not having much. Everyone knew other’s name
          and held each other’s hands in the times of need
when the angers of poverty sought to be freed.

I found myself at her table finally introduced. Her soft hands
shook mine as she asked me if I was also a teacher.
I responded with a nod that I wasn’t but she stared at me
never letting go of that warm smile that was still fresh
                   with tears.

It was then I recognized she lost a son too soon. The pain
guided her to the appreciation of the small things in life
we start to believe are meaningless. She talked and shared
of meeting her son’s childhood hero. A man she recognized
                one day at a charity event; a man she only knew
as a football card hanging on her son’s wall.

Her eyes glimmered as she told me how she believed
             the moment to be a miracle. She was given
the chance to meet someone her son worshipped
and it was a little thing like a football card/something
she always looked at as meaningless that connected her
             to the aspects of her life that helped her grow
and it was this little something meaningless
that turned into a meaningful friendship keeping
                       her son alive

and I believed in miracles because she was a miracle.
She taught me that night how to live and enjoy the moment;
how to appreciate the little things and that we all are a value
to someone even when we think we have no one.

That night I realized that I was indeed a teacher—
and she educated me as she danced into the night
               showcasing the rhythm of all her experiences
in a graceful pattern of life’s choreography.

She was a woman, a mother, a daughter and a believer,
                 her name was Miss Jackee.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Complication Of Innocent Eyes

Every time I look at you

             the lips of your eyes
kiss every mystery of my imagination as I wonder
where you have been
and where you have yet to escape.

Two spirals interlocking with time,
                   your stare is a galaxy
of emotions hidden inside the biology
of identity; two microscopes of golden brown
magnifying your surroundings
into a new science of understanding.

So I study you to find the hypothesis
               of truths unrevealed and the origins
of the future unknown as your eyes,
those spectacles of innocence,
digest all the complications of this world.

You are my assignment and I am your student
                           as you watch the sight of me
reflecting a knowledge only we share.

We are the dissected whole
                  of the vision of our soul.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Street With No Exit

Heartbreak has had me afraid to travel
down side streets where the possibilities of love
were parked close to the curbs of my heart

I was afraid of another flat tire
leaving me stranded on the roads of loneliness
with no one ever stopping to give me that lift
I needed to refuel the engine of my passion

             But one day I took a turn

on a street with no exit


There was no end of a road
but a beginning to a natural

                            feeling of connection

that served as the spark plugs reigniting
my broken down emotions with the renewed
energy of romantic discovery.

© 2009
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Saturday, February 12, 2011

West 42nd Street

Her heart was a tourist searching exploring a new destination for that something once familiar.
She was lost in a silent crowd with the identity
of heartbreak splattered on a billboard of loneliness
                     right there
in the center of Time Square.

The flaunt of her walk was a hidden advertisement
for anonymity because she was there before
almost two years ago at a quarter past four
shadowed with tears as he told her goodbye; the one
                       who kissed her eyes
with the beauty connection was the same one
who left her standing reaching out
for his abandoned affection. She was studied that day
                                speechless, hurt
and standing on the sidewalks of abandonment
                           with nothing to say.

And now she was there again searching for the pieces
                of herself she left behind.
The failure of love was not kind
leaving the memories and moments
stuck on rewind. She stood by a newspaper stand
with the headlines of the many reminders
                      caught in her mind.

She was an editorial of broken feelings
misread for being weak. She needed
to be there once more to re-discover the worth;
                 the meaning of her renewed birth
and to escape her own language of anger
as she was searching; searching for healing
                      and searching for an answer.

And what she found standing right there
were the reflections of her own shadows
giving way to the clarity of a woman
who learned what she was searching for was the love
she rediscovered there on West 42nd Street/
                                            the love for herself.

Tarringo T. Vaughan

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Something Said The Wind

The day was a golden smile as my mind sunbathed

underneath the gaze of the tender skies
as shades of blue eavesdropped through the clouds
of blanketed eyes. I sat in moistened sand
looking out into the distance/a distance
cluttered by the fascination of time. There was nothing
but me and nature gathered on this textured land;
a land of escape and a place that pleasured my thoughts
and tickled the sensitivity of my admiration.
I was alone as the air dimmed into an azure fragrance
of dusk decorating my vision with a dark orangey
kind of blue as the ocean waves massaged my footprints
into the perfect sequence of relaxation.
My journey was a stillness steadily drifting
with a slight breeze that whistled nature’s music;
a soft sound of enrichment that made my heart dance
and remember the dreams of my soul.
It was always my goal just to be; just to exist
in moments of serenity allowing myself to listen
to what life was whispering through the air
and that day became a portrait of clarity
as the wind blew into my pain the many measures
of healing—a same wind that answered my reluctance
of all that was revealing. Something said the wind
that day; something told me to survive.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Sometimes The Rain

There are times I walk through pouring rain
with no umbrella to shield me from all that grieves the pain.
The world watches me as I tremble through muddied
cemented fields where sadness remains and scurry past landmarks
studied through a mind of loneliness as I remember
tears I never allowed to sweat as my hearts perspiration
                                     and this is my quiet inspiration.

There are moments I stand still drenched in reality
looking up at a sky that stares back at me without blinking
as time drizzles into the distance of the recurring memories
I have sheltered deep within as my strength towards progression;
a progression that has led me to a temporary regression
as I filter through anger to find that dry place I feel I belong
and this is my search to be strong

                 because sometimes the rain
washes away the emotional stains
of all the heart gains; sometimes the rain
is the healing dark clouds release
in order for me to shine again; sometimes the rain
reveals all that has emptied/
all that has escaped down an never ending drain

         and sometimes the rain
is just all that remains.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Monday, January 24, 2011

Wind Chimes

It is a s h a t t e r e d silence
that massages the eardrums
of my mind as I dream
within the currency of timeless winds; priceless
arrangements of sound whistling
and ringing in harmony
like a choir of voices illuminating in the ministry
of song.

And I am captured inside radiating
echoes of lyrical imagery; an escape
within an escape of dancing rhymes floating
in a mist of crystallized mystique;
soft notes of music
unique… to the naked eye
of modulation.

These are the wind chimes of living
that reminds me that I am alive
with their sudden motion
of delight that rattles the stillness
of the night releasing a magic
of disappearing emptiness
inhaled through the imagination of musical
vibrations awakening
the tone of freedom.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Thursday, January 20, 2011


So I guess I’ve made some mistakes/
have done some things in my life that has my mind
fucked up on an overdose of regret
seeking answers to all these problems I’ve faced;
these problems so hard to forget.
So I guess that makes me a flawed man;
a man who have made some bad choices
just to find the right path towards growth
and as my heart reflects, I wish someone would’ve told me
that life is meant to be this way.

I wish someone would’ve told me at the age of five
that it was okay to be scared because it is that fear
that instills in us the strength to survive.
I cried so hard from trying to hide tears of vulnerability
that led me to problems that scarred me mentally;

I wish someone would’ve told me during all those times
I was lost that there would always be directions
leading me back to the destination of my own heart.
I was so afraid of never finding my own way
that I faced self-made problems that led me to tear
myself apart;

and I wish someone would’ve told me before I began to love
that it would hurt and sometimes neglect me
because love is not all about the good feelings, it’s also about
the heartbreak and pain that builds
our inner emotional frame.
But I wasn’t prepared leading me towards the problem
of trusting and feeling again.

So I guess I’ve faced some problems/
have made some mistakes to protect my own heart.
There are even days I don’t even recognize
the scattered tears that overflow into this acute
ocean of remorse; tears that just won’t let go
of past healing. So I guess this makes me a flawed man
but I just wish someone would’ve told me
I never had to be perfect.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Born To Write

My ink is the articulation that flows freely from the womb
of expression. I’ve lived the everyday hustle
and survived the reoccurring struggle
of broken dreams
poor themes
and rode the railroad of survival

to destinations where hopeful promises
were never what they seemed.

I’ve seen hungry eyes dilate through centuries
of starvation and I’ve heard angry minds
bow to the applause
of determined ovations;
I’ve watched homeless souls search
the fields of anxious streets
for new shelters of hope; I’ve heard desperate silence
disrupt into new energies of violence
and I’ve witnessed through this air
many faces of strength evaporate
into disrupted fragrances of fear. And their voices
have given birth to my words,

because I was born this way;
I was conceived with the ink of poverty
hemorrhaging through my mind;
I was born to write for the child who challenges
new strategies of believing with the victory
of achieving; I was born to write for the eyes
that blink new illustrations of inspiration
and through the translation of my heart
I was born to write the cure
for the unspoken.

I breathe poetry in every emotion I’ve inhaled
and through the nostrils of influence
I’ve written the realities of those who have suffered
on the cold, harsh roads of a poor society’s soil
because I have lived these words
and I have felt these words
I was born this way;
I was born to write.

© 2010
Tarringo T. Vaughan

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