My life as a hustler, I’ve

learned how to seek out all

the betrayal addicts will

give you just so they can get

more.

I’ve learned business and

marketing, supply and demand.

I’ve learn chemistry, measurements,

promotion, and management.

The game taught me how

to have a cold heart, even

though I know how to bless

people like god, Amen.

In this game friends become

enemies, loved ones steal and

for a crumb, shit —

anybody will kill at will.

I’ve seen deals go wrong, and

police terrorize homes.

Mothers turn tricks for hits.

Gold diggers fall in love with

the grip until her man get

a 10-25 stiff.

I seen love fly away over

a couple grams of yay.

Grand mom, and mom dukes

raiding my room everyday.

I went from block to block

Until I noticed that this has to stop.

Rayon Cauthen is a writer, poet, musician, and entrepreneur from Trenton. He grew up, he says, “in an environment where the weak get strong though violence.” He joined the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen’s Adult Education Program in 2011 and received his GED in 2012. He has since enrolled at Mercer County Community College, started his own greeting card company, and performed music and poetry at various venues.

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