Written by Andrea Janov



With the smell of dead leaves

and the biting wind hinting at coming snow

I knew I was home.


Though New York City is only

one hundred and fifty miles east,

it never has that

fragrance of late fall

like Pennsylvania –

the sweet mold of decaying leaves,

the scent of back to school,

and Halloween,

of days I shivered

because it wasn’t cool

to wear a jacket.


I walk with my hands stuffed

in the pockets of a Descendents hoodie, too thin

for the weather. Goosebumps

prick my body.


Shouting voices grow louder,

muffled music escapes

the building, and skateboards crack

against pavement. The parking lot is littered

with punk kids, half unloaded vans,

and boxes of merch  :  T-shirts and records spill

over the ground.


The windows are still cluttered

with flyers and posters,

Bedford : Nerve Agents : Strung Out

A New Found Glory : Abscission

layered underneath

An Albatross flyer

for tonight.


The homemade sign, stenciled and spray painted


hangs above the door.


People mill

around –

in and out the door

and back in again.


I pass by faces

I almost recognize.

A nod or wave

from former best friends

as I walk through the crowd.


We were going to free Tibet,

feed the homeless,

and save every cow, chicken, and pig

from the slaughter house.


An Albatross is already playing,

their former pop-punk identity

mutated into this noise-rock-funk-side-show.

I stand in what should have been a pit   :  stare

as they writhe,

his back arched   :   screams pulled from

somewhere deep in his diaphragm

the band splayed behind him   :   hunched

over distorted keyboards and screeching guitars.

Becoming the descendants of Iggy

and the Stooges : the MC5  :  T Rex

preaching to their new followers,

Brothers and sisters…


I look to the audience :

tight jeans, designer sneakers,

hair messy in just the right way :

all eyes locked on the performance.


I walk out

without saying goodbye.


Text © Andrea Janov




Edge of Humanity Magazine is an independent nondiscriminatory platform that has no religious, political, financial, or social affiliations.

We are committed to publishing the human condition, the raw diverse global entanglement, with total impartiality.


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