Travelers Welcome

Travelers Welcome

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Hit Up on University Avenue

by Amy Soricelli

Santos plays graffiti tag deep among the wall downstairs after school.
He cuts school mostly in the alley with cigarettes and dried-out beer left out on the counter by
his last-night Uncles; their worn-down shoes clicking like music against the slick linoleum floors.
He wild styles in the early morning like Picasso in training - cannot whack his name on the front steps
cannot be less than the Up he is becoming.
He wears his props like a smile.
Santos learned beer early in the hot August Tuesdays - the novellas not loud enough to cover up the hate -
spraying himself clear across the bricks/his unfinished letters dying in the creases like lines on a face.
Santos has a sister with a butterfly tat circling around her ankle like a web - sexy she thought to herself -
in the greasy window apartment in the middle morning of the South Bronx.
Everyone asks her when she's going to finish something - he can't hear what.
The bouncy baby hands in her hair - on her face / she carries him on her side like a sack - his wet fingers stabbing into her pouty lips
all she can do to keep him quiet in the misty drag of the afternoon.
Santos has neighbors with their coughed-up anger/their lonely skinny cat prowling against his legs
while he takes out the trash.
Every day the same with Santos - his name sprayed like a message across the concrete - hitting up the side streets - tagging up
his block where the school was before it closed.
Everyone reading him in their eyes/ on the sweat of their skin.


  1. Love how you can take the ordinary that people don't see, and give it a face and a voice.

    Extremely talented.

  2. This is so well done!!!

  3. i have been reading Amy's poems for years - one is better than the next.

  4. Amy is so talented. Been reading her poems for the past few years and I enjoy each one, just as much as the first. Beyond talented. Waiting for her to create a book of poems.