“I was surprised, as always, by how easy the act of leaving was, and how good it felt. The world was suddenly rich with possibility.”
– Jack Kerouac
"Walking With the Ancestors in Detroit" I find myself in love With my lost lineage Before my ancestors Rebelled from The Church Marking us As Anabaptist heretics The statuary smashed Generations of conformity Against the present Predecessors of a Polluted body Donning buttoned costumes Banning bicycles Shunning family Welcoming tourists Unrecognizable To our forefathers. I find myself walking down John R past midnight To the gas station On 6 Mile The street is deserted Only a lone sex worker Huddled in winter shadows & her coat First snow of the season I give her $5 & tell her to go eat Stepping over A dead rat A syringe A wig A broken bottle Unrecognizable In my hoodie. Bio: James Schwartz is a poet, slam performer and author of various collections including "The Literary Party: Growing Up Gay & Amish in America" (available on Kindle 2011), PUnatic (Writing Knights Press, 2019) & Motor City Mix (Alien Buddha Press 2022). On twitter James can be found under @queeraspoetry for a follow.