Tyson West and Elizabeth Akin Stelling

Ain’t No Superheroes in Jersey
Inspiration Piece
by Tyson West

The back alley behind my Cousin Vinnie’s pizzeria

Smells of grease and malt liquor cans mostly

Occasional the smell of cordite

Mixed with oregano to spice

The blood smearing the filthy cobble stones

Of some fuck up who crossed his capo.

Yeah they got superheroes in the Big Apple

To the east across the Hudson

Yeah, we got crooked cops and Jimmy Burke

Who even if he ain’t paisano

We can still make a deal

But not with the boys and girls in bright colored tights

Who fly over the great granite towers or climb on their sides like spiders

Hell, beating up Sal for just smuggling in a semi of North Carolina smokes

Is beneath their banter and secret identities

Besides the sergeant who makes the arrest

Gotta seize five cartons of Salems for his wife, I mean, as evidence.

Response Piece by Elizabeth Akin Stelling