“Cursive,” “The Phone Calls” and “Death Can’t Stop the Rap”

“Cursive,” “The Phone Calls” and “Death Can’t Stop the Rap”


A declaration from the district office

we will not be teaching cursive this year

no pens will be required, no extra paper

we will not be teaching cursive this year.

No sweeping strokes above and below the line,

no repeated and repeated letters

wide mouthed o’s, tall t’s, obstinate q’s

to not worry about the slant,

we will not be teaching cursive this year.

The Phone Calls

Forty-year-old woman

wearing a conservative grey business suit

in her newly washed SUV

driving forty miles an hour

down a city street

talking to her business partner,

phone against her ear.

Thirteen-year-old boy

wearing blue jeans and a plaid shirt

carrying a black backpack

jostling and joking with friends

walking home from school

they enter the crosswalk.

The boy is

thrown twenty feet

landing on his sweet, young face

bleeding into a puddle

his friend calls 911

Seventy-two-year-old grandmother

wearing two layers of clothing

on this cold, damp winter day

waits expectantly for

her grandson.

He is late returning from school;

at 4:30 she calls the school.

He is not there.

Thirty-three-year-old mother

wearing brown slacks and a white blouse

sitting in her office working at her computer.

Her phone flashes and vibrates, a number

she does not recognized.

Mother and grandmother, sitting quietly in the waiting room

reserved for family. They hold hands and pray.

The driver of the SUV, charged with reckless driving

sits in a cell waiting for the call.

Will she be charged

with manslaughter?

Death Can’t Stop the Rap

Death can’t stop the rap

reverse the beat

absorb the heat

chance defeat

Death can’t stop the rap

gangs still meet

memories keep

dreams retreat

Death can’t stop the rap

concrete street

guns repeat

bloodied feet

Death can’t stop the rap

souls entreat

bleat like sheep

life so fleet

Death can’t stop the rap

beneath the sheet

bodies sleep

brothers weep


can’t stop

the rap.

About the Author

Louise Moises

Louise Moises was born and raised in San Francisco Bay Area, graduating from San Jose State with a major in Speech and Drama and minor in English. She enjoys traveling in her 23 foot RV with her cat, exploring places that inspire her writing. Her poems and stories have been recognized by the literary divisions of the San Mateo County and Marin County Fairs, the Ina Coolbrith Circle, the Artists Embassy International, Bay Area Poets Coalition & Keats Soul Making.