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Volume 28

 Small Hell

early works in small hell, 70's

hill park

bent tree

oriental contour

MARCH  2016


Small Hell

Family of four stuffed in three rooms
not refugees, not ghetto dwellers,
adult children and offspring living
at the in-laws, no car, no furniture,
taking the bus and train everywhere,
lost in a huge new world, no advantage, no pedigree, no money, just welfare.

How bad could it be, young adventurous
beautiful youngsters looking for a way
to be on their own, raising babies,
built-in baby sitters, gram and gramps,
two aunts, a brother-in-law and a dog,
still, how bad could it be? 4 of 9 on
second floor hell, 9 survivors in one
house, each with an agenda full of
past recriminations and castigations.

How does that play out in the endless
war of nerves we humans like to play?

The newness and beginning of marriage
gave me a way to Zen my way through
drawing and painting, filling sketch books
with an atelier existence we shared in
small hell, the only brimstone from the
kitchen where we served up our usual
smoldering experiments, the smell-good
dinners offered to disapproving children.

After leaving home, Boston
was the worst good thing
that ever happened to me,
flaming away in small hell.
And, the things I would write just
beginning to inflate my universe.
So look where it goes!

ŠJimmy Warner Design, 2018