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A Brilliant Robin

Ever since you and Mindy met,

I have never been able to keep my eyes off you.

When I saw you sail in with Olive

and flex your big forearms,

I knew you were a brilliant Robin.

I never needed toys

cause I watch you for amusement.

I never had to go fishing with grandpa

because I was watching a king on the screen.

The way you made us laugh with Comic Relief.

It was like watching poetry in motion,

like you were the leader of a dead society.

And you touched our hearts with more than comedy.

You’ve been everywhere from cold Moscow

to seeing a good morning in Vietnam.

Just to see you do what you can do

is a real awakening.

The way you can change colors

by turning into a big blue clown,

making dreams of a pauper come true

easier than saying Bibidy Bobidy Boo.

You’ve even changed sexes,

and proved that being an old lady

can be funny and lovable.

It’s almost like you have artificial intelligence.

Then, there is your voice

that hides so many others.

If I didn’t know any better Jack,

I’d say you were a machine covered in furry skin.

You can’t be real.

It’s like you popped out of Neverland

because you never get old in spirit.

There’s always a fresh joke for you to tell.

No birdcage can hold you.

I would have an easier time

trying to catch air with hands.

Your humor is what dreams can come.

You have done so much a man can do.

It’s almost like you have Insomnia

because you never seem to sleep.

You should be man of the year.

If there was a museum of you,

I’d wait all night there with happy feet.

I’d take a picture of you,

and rush it to one hour photo.

I hope somehow I get to meet you someday.

So, until then I will say thank you for everything.

You are a brilliant Robin, and, until there is another,

Good Hunting Mr. Williams.

Excerpt from my novel, Madness in a Recession, available on Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/Madness-Recession-Anthony-Labson/dp/1495967875

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Friday the 13th

A tortured boy is buried in a lake

and counselors don’t seem to mind.

They’re busy watching boobies shake

and wanting to smack that behind.

 

Now they’re running for their lives

from a monster born of scorn.

He stands tall with thick black eyes

and leaves a trail of bodies beaten and torn.

 

His face changes with every death,

but the horror stays the same.

In the final minute when they’re out of breath,

they’re realize running is done in vain.

 

Those that survive can’t gloat.

because the boy can’t expire.

Whether they leave by car or boat,

they all meet the knife, water or fire.

 

He is the monster of the crystal lake,

a shell of a boy that was left to die.

He kills for vengeance sake

and to silence his mother’s cry.

 

If you seek him, then beware.

He won’t haunt your dreams

because that monster is another nightmare.

Friday the 13th is his day, and he wants screams.

The Greatest Pleasure

After years of sleeping

in a box of metal and stone,

I’m free.

Free to indulge in pleasures.

but there is only one pleasure I want.

It’s the greatest pleasure of all.

Will I get a decent hot meal?

Even though it is an upgrade

from the gruel and meatless meatloaf?

 

No.

Will I sleep outside under the stars?

That for me is like a blind man at an art show.

I wouldn’t know the Pegasus from the Dippers.

The only thing I would appreciate is the extra space.

 

No.

What about making love to a beautiful woman?

To have my hands on a pair of firm breasts

and be between the smoothest thighs a woman can have.

To be squeezed by them as I dance between them.

Oh, that is indeed a great pleasure,

but not the one I speak of.

The illusions in prison quenched my thirst for lust.

This is not the pleasure I speak of.

The pleasure I speak of

is the only way I could get to a hot meal,

or sleep outside under the stars,

or find the love of a beautiful woman.

The greatest pleasure of all is this.

Now that I am released,

I will go to a motel and get a room.

Then, for the next couple of hours,

I will keep opening and closing my door.

Luke Cage Season 2 is Bulletproof!

Netflix and Marvel have come a long way since the release of Daredevil. The success of that show laid the foundation that would give fans an introduction to characters only known in the comics. Characters like Iron Fist, Jessica Jones and the power man himself, Luke Cage. Now with his second season released, Mike Colter is breaking new barriers by portraying a side of the bulletproof hero of Harlem that’s both interesting, yet terrifying. Netflix’s shows of the Marvel characters have all been dark, but things take a new twist with Luke Cage. The best addition this season comes with the arrival of the new antagonist, Bushmaster, played by Mustafa Shakir.

The season starts off some time after the events of The Defenders, and Luke Cage has become the unofficial sheriff of Harlem. Luke is hellbent on his war to bring down his rival, Mariah Dillard (Alfre Woodard), but soon realizes that he isn’t the only one willing to burn in Hell to get to the devil. When Bushmaster arrives, Luke is pushed into a situation where he must either help the devil he knows or the devil he doesn’t. The problem with that situation is neither choice is good for Harlem, and Luke knows he must dig deep to find another way where Harlem wins. It’s a battle that will force Luke to battle demons both externally and internally.

The only help Luke has during this war is his old friend Misty who is fighting her own battles after losing her arm. There’s an unexpected surprise character introduced to help Luke through his internal crisis by actor, Reg E. Cathey, who died in February this year. There are also cameos from other marvel shows that come in to help Luke contain the chaos, but soon Luke realizes this is a war he must end on his own. The war will end as it began, with a bloody and shocking end that will leave the audience guessing what could come in the next season. The ending is a twist that resembles the ending of one of America’s most classic movies, and it will make people wonder how this will affect Harlem.

Mustafa Shakir did a fantastic job as Bushmaster, I almost say that he’s my second favorite villain next to Vincent D’Onofrio as Kingpin. Introducing fans to a new kind of villain with his marital arts and practice of Voodoo, Shakir should be considered to return if possible. Viewers will immediately see how Bushmaster and Luke Cage are alike as the show progresses to the eventual showdown which is brutal at best. The action is par compared to other shows, but as stated before, the ending is what makes the show worth all the drama. The drama all centers around one person and that’s Mariah Dillard.

Mariah’s past comes back to destroy her, but she puts all of Harlem in the crossfire to protect her and the people she loves. If Bushmaster isn’t enough trouble, Misty is digging with her bare hands to find something in the dirt that will finally put Mariah behind bars. Alfre Woodard portrays a new side of Mariah that is both vicious and psychotic. Delivering an award-winning performance, most fans of the famous antagonist might be sad by the ending of her story, but I got a feeling we will still see her next season. What can we expect to see from Netflix and Marvel?

Daredevil should be making his return soon after being presumed dead after the events of The Defenders. Matt Murdock may be coming back to a few surprises since Foggy is with a new law firm, Karen has been seen with The Punisher, and Wilson Fisk may be returning from his incarceration. Wilson Bethel is set to appear as the legendary assassin, Bullseye, and that’s a showdown many have been waiting to see since the character went mainstream after being introduced by Colin Farrell in the box office bomb, Daredevil. Maybe Hell’s Kitchen has learned to move on without the blind vigilante, or it might need him more than ever. We’ll have to wait sometime later in 2018 or maybe early 2019.

Life With MoviePass

When I worked for the movie theater business back in high school, there were two constant complaints I always heard. The first one was always, “Do you have Snowcaps?” The second is, “Why are you ripping us off with your ticket prices?” I always found that last question funny because most of the people who asked always seemed to have the money to keep coming every week. Now I’m older and movie prices are starting to affect me, so I understand the frustration of wanting to go to the movies but not having the money.

 

That is until MoviePass came around and my attendance skyrocketed as soon as I signed up. MoviePass is a subscription service that allows people to attend the movies for a monthly or annual fee. I bought the annual fee which was a discounted price of $115 at the time and that included a processing fee; here’s how it works. After your fees are paid, a card is sent to you and you sign up on the MoviePass app on your smart phone so you can register the card. Once you’re set up, you go to the movie theater, see if the movie you want to see is available at the time, then check in on the app.

 

Money will be added to the card, then you’ll swipe your card and out comes the ticket. A new rule was recently implemented that requires you to take a picture of the ticket and upload it in the app. When I first heard about this, it sounded like a scam because how can this company possibly be making money if I’m only paying a small price. There are several reasons I can name, but that’s not what I’m writing about. The fact is, this deal is legit, and it’s already saved me $218 on movie tickets.

 

I used my card to see movies I was dying to see like Justice League, Avengers: Infinity War, Solo, and Black Panther. I’ve also used it to see movies I wouldn’t have risked the money to see like The Greatest Showman, Bad Samaritan, Tag, and Game Night. This subscription has brought me and several others back to the movie theaters, but there has been some hiccups. The only disappointments are the subscription only works for standard formats which means no 3D, RPX and IMAX screens. The other is you can’t get tickets in advance, so you must check in that day; if you want to see a movie that comes out in two weeks, you’ll have to use your own money.

 

The biggest problem I had with the subscription is when I paid during a time when the service offered to let me see any movie once a day. Now it’s only limiting users to see one movie once, and that threw me for a loop. I wanted to be upset, but because of work and school, I don’t have the time to see a movie more than once anyway. I can understand for those that do have the time, but I also understand from a business aspect. If they didn’t place that limit, then I know there are people out there that would see some movies every single day if they could.

 

The fact is, MoviePass has been my one of my favorite investments. AMC Theaters is already following their steps by announcing they will have a similar service for $19.95 a month that will include 3D and IMAX screens. MoviePass is expected to offer a similar deal in the fall and a “Bring a friend” option to combat AMC’s ambition. Maybe AMC’s offer will be better and MoviePass is having financial problems due to rapid subscriber growth, but we’ll have to wait and find out. For now, MoviePass is the way to go if you’re a movie lover and it’s well worth the price monthly or annual.

When I See Red, I Turn Blue

Ever since my youth,

all I saw is loss.

One goes another day

and another the next day.

 

I asked why one day

and my mother said

what her father said

to her brothers.

 

“One day we will see red,

It will make you angry,

It will make you fight,

and that’s the day you’ll be dead.”

 

That’s where they all went.

They went to die.

She told me when I see a color

then I my time is up.

 

Then in my prime,

they came for me.

They shoved me in a box

and kept me in the dark.

 

Dropped me off in an iron pin

and the only thing colder

than the bars keeping me in

was my blood, scaring me.

 

I remember the last thing

my father said

before he went.

Before he went into the box.

 

“Don’t be scared.

This day comes for us all,

the most important thing is

how you choose to go.”

 

The door to a dark tunnel came

and creatures with spears force me in.

That’s when I saw it,

The red.

 

It was carried by a creature,

flapping in the wind

and taunting me to come after it.

I know my time has come.

 

I reflect on my father’s words,

and began to charge at the creature.

If the red is going to kill me,

then I’m taking that bastard with me.

 

I fight as hard as I can

but in the end I fulfill

The prophecy.

I thought I could resist.

 

I saw the red,

Now I’m turning blue

because I don’t want to die.

All I see is cheers and red.

I Have a Dad

I have a Dad.

He loves me when I’m good.

He punishes me when I’m bad.

He never does it because he can.

 

I have a Dad.

He loves to make me laugh because of how I smile,

no matter how lonely or sad I am.

I’m proud to be his son.

 

I have a Dad.

He is there to guide me,

even when I get mad

and I lose all my sanity.

 

I have a Dad.

He is there for my mother, sisters and me.

He always gives an ear and a shoulder to our problems.

When my other friends see us, they begin to cry.

 

They cry for something they don’t have.

I cry because I have a Dad.

Worst Insult Given

The first voices I heard.

The first to see me walk.

The first to hear me speak.

The first to hear me laugh.

 

The first ones to love me.

The first ones to influence me.

The first ones to train me.

The first ones to comfort me.

 

The only ones that were there.

The only ones that mattered.

The only ones who felt my pain.

The only ones who had faith in me.

 

They filled my heart with love.

They filled my belly with food.

They filled my head with dreams.

They filled my life with happiness.

 

But something went wrong.

 

My dreams turned into nightmares.

The food in my belly was spoiled.

Misery clouded my mind

and hate engulfed my heart.

 

Friends became enemies.

A stranger’s touch was numb.

The worst of them all

was the life I didn’t want.

 

I live in seclusion,

solitude is my only friend,

fun is a childhood memory,

and the past is my torment.

 

They tried to reach out.

They tried to crack the shell.

They tried to embrace me.

They tried to grab my hand.

 

But I just cut it down.

 

They told me it was ok.

They told me they were proud.

They told me it didn’t matter.

They told me they loved me.

 

I couldn’t understand how.

So, I gave the greatest insult I could give.

I dug the biggest hole in the ground

and placed myself in the center.

 

They gave me life

and I repaid them

by not living it.

Years I can’t get back.

 

Opportunities wasted,

Relationships that never happened,

and Careers ruined.

I wish sorry was good enough.

 

Fortunately, with loving parents,

Love isn’t conditional.

 

They can forgive me,

but why does it have to be so hard

to forgive myself?

I only hope that I learn.

 

They were the first in my life.

The only ones who believe I matter.

They fill a void in my life.

They tell me they’ll be there, always.

 

I only have one life to live,

and I owe it to them to embrace it.

They don’t deserve the insult,

and I must find forgiveness.

For Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade

Depression

By

Anthony Labson

 

Depression is like being at the beach

and you’re standing in front of the waves.

 

It will hit you repeatedly

and you can try to resist

but once the waves get too high

you’ll fall under the pressure.

 

Once that happens

you’re under.

 

Your eyes begin to burn

because they can’t stand

to look at what they don’t

want to see and even if you try,

everything is out of focus anyway.

 

People can try to help

but they don’t understand that

it’s not just problems with sight.

Their words can’t penetrate the water

that fills your ears.

 

This leaves you deaf to their cries

and the loneliness sinks in.

 

You believe there’s no hope

that there is nothing to live for

so what’s the point of having air

in your lungs?

 

It’s better just to invite the water

and let it pull you down further

by then it’s too late.

Hands try to reach you

but your too heavy to pull up.

 

The numb sensations start

and you move by involuntary reflex.

Your end comes and the wave

takes you out into the ocean.

 

People think it’s a sign of selfishness

and they don’t deserve the attention.

 

You are in the right state of mind.

so how can you possibly understand

what you may have never experienced.

In the mind of someone depressed

you are the selfish one.

 

You say you want them around

because seeing you makes them happy.

But their life is miserable

so to them you’re saying,

“You want them to stay alive

so they can remain miserable?”

 

It’s a powerful and destructive

Disease.

If you disagree with me then fine

but I speak from experience.

 

I’ve been depressed,

I’ve been angry at the world,

and I still fight with it

even to this day.

 

Yes, others have it worse.

Some people drink

while others smoke

and some do even worse.

 

Depression is a powerful wave

that has taken many lives.

To those still fighting,

you’re in my prayers.

 

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