Graphic Novel Review 177/365: The Start of the Semester: A Poem

So today is the day review 177,

but I already gave my review to Mary, Joe, Steve, and Aaron.

In class I gave a run down on a ton of different comics,

to my students, like 75 mini-reviews, so I wouldn’t have to write this.

A little Marvel, a little DC…

but mostly lesser knowns cause comics ain’t nothing new to me.

I was raised on the visual, had glasses since second grade.

Not that I could’t see, just wanted a closer look at how the Punisher’s bullets ricocheted.

Raised to praise military guns and stacks of dough.

Spent days at my lemonade stand playing G.I. Joe

because my dad was a product of a system that failed him.

Had him enrolled for Vietnam where chances of survival were slim.

Physically and/or mentally…

his heart still beat but mind injured badly.

I watched him die, right before my eyes.

A visual worth more than a thousand-worded goodbyes.

My life has brought me to this moment as cliche as it sounds.

Where well-placed lines obscure fore, middle, and backgrounds.

For every moment exists as a tableau,

waiting for one to strike as the hungriest, hungriest hippo.

I can’t specifically say what brought me to the pages of visual greats,

maybe so I could uniquely educate, and deflate the weight

of the superficial narrate.

Because if images are not as powerful as words

then why does the image of my dad’s breathless hand grasped within mine

hit you with more force than this black and white page?

Without image, there is no word.

And since words are just images that allow us to see other images,

I guess we’ve been reading comics all along.




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