To Make a Decision

By JP

The fire in his eyes show the ambition and hunger
While his deathly silence will make you wonder
Never had you seen a young man so calm and poised
When you are used to the youngsters disturbing the peace making noise

By his demeanor you can tell he’s on a mission
A mental one, not a violent one. Man, pay attention.
He know that he must do this right
If not then it may cost him his life

To be loyal or to be smart
Loyalty is a must though—It’s in his heart
“So what’s up man, are you going to help us jack this car or what?
You know if you don’t go you don’t get a cut!”

He thought of his struggling mother who had warned him of them
And what it will do to her if something happened to him
“Naw man, I can’t go. My mom is looking out the window”
He lied, and lift quickly picking up the tempo

A couple hours later at home listening to his radio
Breaking news coming at you live at Club Indigo
3 young men got shot to death trying to jack a car
They tried but they did not get too far

“So what are you going to do,” they asked,
Snapping him out of his vision
“No!” He said with precise conviction
Because in the end he knew that he made a wise decision!

Comments

  1. It can be tough to make a morality tale compelling, but you really nailed it with this one. The rhythm of the poem kept pushing me forward to keep reading, and your word choice was great– “quickly picking up the tempo” and “precise conviction” are my favorites. I want to share with you another morality poem, this one much shorter but still powerful, from the excellent Gwendolyn Brooks, who became a famous poet during a time when it was not easy to be either African American or a woman. She wrote this in 1960, so the vocabulary is a little dated, but it still resonates:

    We Real Cool

    We real cool. We
    Left school. We

    Lurk late. We
    Strike straight. We

    Sing sin. We
    Thin gin. We

    Jazz June. We
    Die soon.

  2. Real nice, that the story has a twist, and a “vision” inside of it…, and even a good lie! It’s so sharp that If Grandpa D. (me) was your teacher, he’d ask you to sweat to get rid of the “fat,” which is most obvious in the title and the last line. (difference between making a point… and sbeating someone over the head with it.)

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