the louderARTS Project

Guy LeCharles Gonzalez

Guy LeCharles Gonzalez was born in New York City in the summer of '69 and raised in the Bronx through 1980.

His work can be found in Burning Down the House (Soft Skull Press, 2000) and Selected Squares of Concrete (loudpoet productions, 2003); on the CDs nycSLAMS (reVERB Recordings, 2000) and 5 PAST 13 (louderARTS Project, 2003), both of which he also co-produced. He has also published articles in Poets & Writers Magazine.

He has been a featured performer at SoUPFest (1999), the Austin International Poetry Festival (1999, 2000) and the Connecticut Poetry Festival (2001). He was a member of the 1998 National Poetry Slam Champions (Nuyorican Poets Cafˇ) and served on the Executive Committee of Poetry Slam, Inc. (2001).

He has led workshops, seminars and panel discussions in various forums including High Schools, Colleges, Festivals and conferences.

He was the founder and curator of the acclaimed New York City reading series, a little bit louder, from 1998-2001, and Jan-May 2003.

loudpoet.com
groups.yahoo.com/group/loudpoet
guy at loudpoet dot com




Breathless

When I was young
I believed that if I held my breath while crossing bridges
I'd survive the day the ground gave way
plunging me into the dark waters below.
         
     My mother would look back at me and smile,
          How long can you hold it?
         
         My silence was her answer
as eyes teared
and pulse quickened...
         
     When I was young
I believed Batman
       and Robin
       and the rest of the Superfriends
really were on the other end of the phone
telling me it was past my bedtime
       and that if I was good
       and did my homework
       and respected my mother
  that one day I too could be a superhero.

I never questioned Wonder Woman's deep voice
or Superman's gruff smoker's growl.

     When I was young
I believed the skeleton in my closet
was the monster under my bed
     so I confronted him
         befriended him
          called him poetry
              and set him free.
         
     When I was young
I believed I would one day change the world
through sheer force of will.
         
     Manhood introduced me to bridges
             long and winding
where the ability to hold my breath paled in comparison
to the need to hold my ground.
         
Bridges collapse from neglect
  and acts of war
    or acts of God
a foolish game of semantics
no pen and ink hero could ever win.
         
     I learned in time to cherish my mother's wisdom
and the true meaning of her words.
         
     I still believe I can change the world
no matter what bridges I have to cross.
         
         How long can you hold it? she asks.
     As long as it takes.

© Guy LeCharles Gonzalez



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