Sunday, May 3, 2009

अंकल अल Three

Uncle Al Three: Down in Manilatown May 3, 2009

The old Manong beat tunes out on battered old guitars
Down at the old Tino's barbershop that no longer stands
Tunes like ghostly whispers from better times
Next to the dim sum dive called Wong's Grand

A cold chill dances across concrete worn with toil
Old men curse the smell of a homeland scent
A million miles away in some stranger's paradise
A man's blood and sacrifice pay the rent

Manong Al carves words from the cold stones of thought
Chiseling memories from alleyways stained with oil
Oil from the noodle houses, their neon signs sing
Songs that fade into battered pots, always a boil

The old Manong shuffle like the ancient ghosts
Where the International Hotel bricks lie in piles
The past twists like barb wire across my thoughts
It's edges cut across the empty lonely endless miles

The dim sum joints break the darkness of the night
It's touch heart name reminds me of the man
His words brought home to those who lived in memories
Like a warrior taking a final battered stand

Now the leaves fall on sidwalks tread well worn
A thousand stories worn into a single beaten stone
Uncle Al with pen in his wisdom filled hand
Manong Al it's time to take you home

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