Stephen Macomb / A.K.A. Steve Miller
Stephen Macomb -after winning no state and regional writing championships, has not recieved his undergraduate degree on a full scholarship from the renowned University of Anywhere. He did not go on to do his graduate studies at the prestigious Any Old State. Stephen was also not repeatedly published by top notch literary journals across the country nor has he recieved numerous certificates, literary awards, and honorary degrees from other acclaimed institutions. (see list below too numerous to mention). The sole measure of his accomplishment exists in what he has stopped doing. (most illegal activities and substances known to modern man.) His greatest public acknowledgement has been as “The Best House Painter in Los Angeles” (Los Angeles Magazine - July ‘99) and the most poignant historical fact regards the house in which he was raised. Designed and built by his father, this house was featured in a special Sunday section of The New Haven Register as, “The House of Tomorrow” in 1948. Said house, was nominated to the National Register of Historic Places, not, unfortunately, for being the birthplace of Stephen Macomb.

On the other hand, Alex M. Frankel has written: Tough, virile, spare, blue-collar, defiantly local, excited, questioning and indirect—these are some of the words I’d use to describe Steve Miller’s work. I know him from the Wednesday night workshop, where he is a thoughtful and dedicated critic. His taut, confidently crafted poems are suffused with danger and insight and vivid social commentary. Sometimes these poems are as edgy as rap lyrics. And they always offer a unique combination of slice-of-life street wisdom, on the one hand, and deep preoccupation with style, on the other. It is a wise and vital voice we hear each time we pick up one his poems, or have the privilege to listen to him perform them.

Long, Long After You're Gone

I was here, I am here
I will be here just
listen I am in the walls
I am painted into the ceilings
and the floors the shelves
my sweat is in the stones
my blood is in the carpet
I have tooled every lock
swept every nook clean

My heart beats in the speakers
my eyes are the lights that
shine on all of your poets.
My friends have sat in every chair
breathed out in all the spaces,
their names are graffitted on
every windowpane
their gum is stuck to the bottom
of all the tables go on look

We will whisper like the windchimes
do on the slightest breeze
have seen all of the others
come and go - on and on.
I was here long before
you even thought of arriving
in the birthday suit of emperors
to shadow box the cartel

I have dug in every inch of dirt
and unless you raze this
building to the ground and
plow it under or cart if off
piece by piece to the landfill
you will never, ever
succeed in removing me from
the attic, the crawl-space
the very framework and tower
of this building

And even after I'm six feet under
or my ashes have been scattered
at sea or on the far Ganges
I am here forever
I will never, not ever
cease to inhabit this place
and these poets will
never, not be brothers
and sisters to me as much
as my very own.

 2020 Stephen Macomb / A.K.A. Steve Miller
Stephen Macomb / A.K.A. Steve Miller was a Featured Poet at the December 2021 Second Sunday Poetry Series