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Buddy Bantum

I began working at Bethlehem Steel’s Sparrows Point Plant in 1973. I had graduated high school in 1968 in Connecticut and attended George Washington University for one year before dropping out and moving to Baltimore. While at GWU, I participated […]

Buddy Bantum

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I began working at Bethlehem Steel’s Sparrows Point Plant in 1973. I had graduated high school in 1968 in Connecticut and attended George Washington University for one year before dropping out and moving to Baltimore. While at GWU, I participated […]

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Bernie

Photo used under a Creative Commons license from flickr user Jasperdo  In the 1970s, I was living in Waverly, near the old Memorial Stadium. The city neighborhood was nearly all

Mac

Mac peered over his machine. His frantic foreman missed the wiser-than-you’ll-ever-be smile.   Mac was never disrespectful. But nobody messed with Shop Steward Billy McGuire, WWII U.S. Army Veteran.   I caught the big guy’s dry smile myself, radical know-it-all I

Coalescence

I peel leaf-colored clumps from my shovel. The clay carries memories, art class, wonders of the kiln, the rabbi’s head on a silver dish atop my grandmother’s mahogany table, forever pliable and moist, sculptures adorning the

We’ll Be Fine

The presidential scholar drips delicate fingers down his chin. With smooth, white, Ivy-infused certitude, he promises. Our institutions are strong. We will be just fine.   Let’s hope, the anchor replies, profusely praising his brilliance, deftly slipping into

Revolt

Animals go loony when earthquakes and volcanoes gather their murderous forces. But dogs and owners sleep silently even as teachers in the hamlets of West Virginia summon the courage of miners and rich kids

Statues

He sits like one of the park’s statues, knit cap pulled down to his eyes, blanket tugged up to his mouth, five rotten teeth his most memorable feature. I put a dollar in

Who the Hell Am I?

In 1970, after dropping out of college in Washington, D.C., I moved to Baltimore where I lived in a row home still heated by a coal furnace on West

Sanibel

The evening before, sands were a flea market. Bronze pen shells, necklaces of barnacles, Purple urchins, mottled purse crabs, spotted like the barrels of paint horses, ivory bivalves picked clean as steamers after the feast. Shoppers

Shakedown

Same guy, ponytail now gray, still strong, enduring as the word, scrappy. Larry the legend, busted ass, eight hours in the mill, then, on sweltering afternoons, hammered shingles onto steep roofs, hit the bar at nightfall, sucked down a few beers, did

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