Monday, July 2, 2012

Ian Khadan


Two leisure targets walk down Prospect Street, brimmed skullies
and Omavi jeans flapping at their heels in the gray Saturday—
mid-January. It must be the easy Dutch sprightly out the North Face
that wafts the smell of game over to the Jackals waiting 'cross
the yard from old Upsala College, between the abandoned admissions
building and the empty parking lot. They line up one after the other
from out the unkempt landscape and split ranks in flanking
pursuit. There is no chase because the boys are hard and the one
with skin like prey has been waiting to prove himself deadly
before fangs are drawn just below the crotch and fangs are knocked
hard against the skull and the gray noon fades with the Jackals howling
‘round the bend smooth as ghosts, hard like bruised ego, easily as forgotten.

Bob Holman reads "Stickup Kids":

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Ian confesses: "'Stickup Kids' is, unfortunately, inspired by true events. When I was seventeen, a friend and I were robbed at gunpoint in front of our high school, which was constructed from the ruins of the now defunct Upsala College. Thus this poem was given life, eight years later but life nonetheless."

IAN KHADAN was born in Georgetown, Guyana. At nine he moved to East Orange, NJ with his family and now resides in Newark, NJ. He's a graduate of Rutgers University with a B.A. in English. He curates the Ginsberg Turn On series and the Urbana Poetry Slam at the Bowery Poetry Club in New York City. Go to for more information.

1 comment:

Dorothy James said...

A strong poem. Images of violence but not gratuitously so, strong sense of reality, from the insouciance of the "leisure targets" to the deadly determination of the Jackals. Strange beauty of language in the ugliness, leaving haunting questions, as in "easily as forgotten."