Boxes and Freeways – Man Loses His Circle of Men

Jim Ellis


This piece originated from a conversation with another MDI man. We spoke of the challenge it is to maintain our circle, as men – in this day and age – must break free once a week for three hours, traveling distances and overcoming other day-to-day stresses. In times of old, our circle was footsteps away, available every day.

It wasn’t like this…
A pile of paperwork
Concerned about our network
Pleasing bosses who pull the strings
Demanding fancy words and things
Sporting a business suit
Our main pursuit
To keep the salary climbing higher and higher
Along with our esteem
An honor-less and meaningless fight
All nights and all days
It wasn’t like this…
Boxes and freeways

In times past, we traveled fast
To gather with men
To fight and defend
To stand in circles where the flickering fire kept watch and created light
We gathered together – for the tribe was right there
So close … so near … so everywhere
Before we had to travel far
To the watering holes, the sports bar
Before our lives and our community were cut up, piece by piece
Into structures that separated and divided what once was one
Before we had to jump into vehicles and battle cars for space
In this rat’s race
Forgetting the bond as it depletes and decays
Into boxes and freeways

No, it wasn’t like this…
The housing tract – they are all the same
The only difference – a street name
Rows and rows – realtors address the profit
The property taxes – no one can stop it
We’re imprisoned into squares, our cars fit too
The only thing missing – me and you
And yet we search
In isolation, a sportsman’s game without one play
In the dilapidated and chronic delays
Men who long for their tribe, to again find their way
Beyond the boxes and freeways

James Anthony Ellis is a writer living in San Diego. You can reach him at www.LegacyProductions.org.


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