I wrote this poem for a friend of mine who works with abused children. LJ


looking down
at this 35 year old
face of pain
worn by a
5 year old boy

looking down
at him wishing
i could
look up at his smiles
instead i saw eyes
that ached with life

never saw him
before this instant
in eternity
wishing i had met him
at birth and not
this interrupted

stunted childhood
i would exchange
those eyes immediately
for ones that laugh
there is nothing tranquil
about slo-dead eyes

wanting to rush hug
this loveless child
softly smiling to myself
at this less than
silly thought
looking up at me
he saw me
dreaming about him
and with mirrored smiles
we reflected each other

smiles moved like
laser beams
between us
his eyes too old for me
his mind filled with welts
five-year-olds are
not supposed to be
this old i thought to myself
silently dreams overcame reality

and he looks at me with
these small vagabond  smiles
emanating from his tiny face
now finally looking his age
little grins
emerging like
peanut butter
on his face

a quiet light
between us
we bathed
in it
our smiles joined
in our moment of eternity

©1998 lgjaffe

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Larry Jaffe

Larry says he was born on a mountaintop in the South Bronx (despite statements to the contrary and that there are no mountains in the Bronx), in the shadow of Yankee Stadium.  From the time he could walk he either was going to play baseball, hoops or be a poet or writer.  Either that or as the spiritual reincarnation of Davy Crockett; he just couldn't make up his mind.  He felt he had that mountaintop thing in common with Crockett and his folks once bought him a coonskin cap that he felt ridiculous in, thus took off on this peculiar tangent.

He is the product of his own dreams born and bred from Eastern European stock of Russia and Romania. He has decided that he no longer believe in biographies, and adamantly poses "Why must I trot out lists of places I have appeared and places I have been published or tell you about my childhood dreams to be a beatnik when I grew-up. If you want to know who I am read my poetry, It's all in there. The air is letters, I breathe them in and simply breathe out poetry.

He has produced several chapbooks including:  Winter Rose, Hates not Natural and Eating the Rain.  He has one e-book entitled Jewish Soulfood available from Dead End Street Publications .  His new CD Unprotected Poetry and accompanying book has just been released by
PoetWarrior Press .  Pudding House Publications has just released a special book of Jaffe's Greatest Hits along with several other poets.  Salmon Publishing will be publishing his  book Lying Half-Naked in the Doorway.  And Lummox Press is about to publish his book of poetic noir, L. A. Rhapsody.

Jaffe has been featured in poetry venues and festivals both throughout the U.S. and abroad.  He is very active in the poetry community hosting the very hot ultra chic weekly PoeticLicense series at Zen Restaurant in Silverlake, California.   Jaffe is also a featured poet for Daimler/Chrysler's Spirit in the Words poetry program.  His web sites have won numerous awards, and he feels one of his best creations is the poets4peace site at www.poets4peace.co
m.  Each month Jaffe writes a poetry column for www.about.com as the socal poetspondent for their Museletter.  He is the International Readings Coordinator for the United Nations Dialog Amongst Civilizations through Poetry Project , and he has spearheaded organizing poetry hosts around the world through the PoHo community group.  He was recently named Artistic Director of Poetry Series for the Autry Museum of Western Heritage.

read Larry's poems
knots and tangles