Song for a Spent 100W Bulb

too bright to live long,
too costly, my mother feared
your appetite, guzzling the mains,
hung from the ceiling, little sun
I rhymed into, close as I could stand,
imagining the bulbed head of a mic,
searing fistful of feverish light
against my face – suddenly emptied,
plinked out, no longer able to beat back
the dark, capable only of cooling
after-image, of dying
memory, milky glass shell
and filament jangle, capable
of being held, of being rolled
in a boy’s hot palm, singing
one soft, blind note.

Copyright: ‘Song for a Spent 100 Watt Bulb‘, © Jacob Sam-La Rose 2010, first published in Red: an Anthology of Contemporary Black Poetry edited by Kwame Dawes (Peepal Tree Press, 2010), used by permission of the author.

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