*Man Gone Down* by Michael Thomas Haiku Review

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*Man Gone Down*
by Michael Thomas
Haiku Review

1. Starting *Man Gone Down*/
Gently riveting to me/
(I “Identify”)/
#haiku

2. Confronted by youth/
The youth that hides in novels/
With happy sadness/
#haiku

3. Fiction converges/
With readers’ realities/
History revised/
#haiku

4. “Strange… to go through life/
A social experiment/
Understanding… Gone”/
#haiku (Thomas 99)

5. “You can tell when someone’s been loved; they don’t question its presence, nor do they despair when it seems to be gone” (Thomas 165).

6. Three hundred pages/
Of fearing his decisions/
Vicariously/
#haiku

7. Protagonist’s life/
Both Virtuous & sinful/
Flirts with disaster/
#haiku

8. Faithful to his wife/
Staying sober, kind & fair/
When cheating is rife/
#haiku

9. Crazy decisions/
Like evading a mistress/
Are perfectly right/
#haiku

10. “I was born a poor/
Black boy of above av[‘]rage/
Intelligence[: CURSE]” /
#haiku (Thomas 216)

11. The Expectations/
Placed upon Smart Black People/
Prove to be unfair/
#haiku

12. “Representing” Blacks/
Burdens folk who need to live/
Simply for themselves/
#haiku

13. “Representative/
Man” must undo and fulfill/
All stereotypes/
#haiku

14. Protagonist can’t/
Simply exist for himself/
He lugs history/
#haiku

15. Meditative run/
Through the Brooklyn Bridge’s ribs/
Explored though nicely/
#haiku

16. Digressions of thought:/
Thinking man in thoughtless world/
Explored New York well/
#haiku

17. Manual labor/
Suspends thinking men in toil/
This book explores that/
#haiku

18. Texture of labor/
The Psychology of work/
Is rarely explored/
#haiku

19. The isolation/
Of immigrants languages/
Exposed in this book/
#haiku

20. Job sites’ loyalties/
Along and across language/
Was a nice detail/
#haiku

21. Surrendering job/
With a violent outburst/
To keep pride was nice/
#haiku

22. Swimming under the bridge/
Like a weird aquatic troll/
Strange symbolism/
#haiku

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23. Impossible acts/
Of the damaged superman/
Kept me reading on/
#haiku

24. When he cheats golfers/
He falls to earth a human/
Though they needed it/
#haiku

25. Boston backstory:/
Old Friends on the edge expose/
Promise’s burden/
#haiku

26. He survives for friends/
Not the noble ideas/
Placed upon his skin/
#haiku

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2 responses to “*Man Gone Down* by Michael Thomas Haiku Review

  1. This was a powerful book, and it affected me so much that I couldn’t finish it. Haiku #14 describes the book perfectly: “Protagonist can’t/
    Simply exist for himself/He lugs history” The author is a former CUNY adjunct; I think now he’s full-time at Hunter.

    • He shouted out two of my Hunter profs in his “thanks” section: he got adjunct life right & “the burden of history” thing right. I love how he depicted non-academic work also. The burden of damaged “townie” friends was good, though painful. Thanks for reading R.

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