My Name


My Name

Photo by Maddy Mudd

What’s my name?

You’ve seen me perhaps, but likely only heard the stories

About the crime in my past and the violence down my streets

Driving past you notice me little, just

my skin color and the blaring spanish beats

My streets are run down, my buildings a bust

I used to be prosperous and grand, on this fact you must trust

that I was once the place to be,

A place to raise your family and see

All the things this life had to offer you-

Yet the vestiges of this glorious past are few.

What’s my name? My name is Camden

and I can fill the needs of your vices,

Drugs on many corners, prostitutes down Broadway,

They’re yours for the right prices.

My name is Camden and

I need revitalization, I need renewal

A saving grace from my current condition

This life I lead, I want to change

my course away from perdition

What’s my name? My name is…

You.
My name is anyone who’s ever fallen through
the cracks of their own ambitions,
given up on dreams of their youth

Look around you if all that’s needed is proof

Of Camden’s similarity to us all,

How we’re all affected by the fall

It’s your heart with violence, you whom I can’t trust

It’s you that’s run down, your efforts at renewal a bust

You are the broken on, you’re the one on your knees

Once you were innocent,

now those days are past

Constantly you seek salvation,

wondering if this time it will last.

Camden and you are not so different

when you look at it this way

Everyone is broken, rich and poor the same

The only difference is

Money cloaks our problems; our best is seen center stage

Poverty reveals our faults, inescapable as a cage.

The reality of our universal brokenness is stark

like a modern scarlet letter, a mark

that reminds us of our need for salvation

and whatever religion is your creed or dedication

Most all admit we are less than we could be,

I think it started back in a garden, stolen fruit from a tree…

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