This New City
It can make one a little funny in the head, these rumbles and heats,
days like running downhill.
From where you stand, off to the southeast an orange crane looms,
ready any day now, to lower the boom on the rock face
of the lying-in hospital. The women who no longer lie
in for forty days think nothing of it.
Manmade lichen of half-eradicated signage painted high on the bricks,
the sediment of place: commerce, abandonment.
Across the street, the automatic teller tells me there’s a fee for everything,
but thankfully, the choices as they are presented are fairly simple.
I agree, and wish to continue this transaction.
You get up,
& don’t know what any day holds
or whose daughter it will be today
or what will make you wish you prayed
or what is asked of you to bear
or how to set aside what cannot be grasped;
you just get up.
To go find out.
But in a moment of repose, there is
A curtain’s transparency, light on metal through a scrim of fabric,
a miracle of sentience.
How you remain on my pillow.
That you remain.
Your head & then, the happy evidence of it.
Empty lot garden plots, the most hopeful thing.
Those who have one prefer to say “patch.”
As in, what covers up a hole.
There’s always an interruption
to what we thought we were talking about
what we thought we would be
where we thought we would be
After the before is broken
the wrecking ball swings long on its pendulum,
surveys the landscape as in a sigh, looking on,
sways away & toward & pauses in its work.
Your profile peering through the high link fence
is a bracket, as if to algebraically contain
what goes on behind your face,
multiplied by what’s in front of it.
The decedent. An indecent phrase. Please cease & desist.
The burden of proof is that nothing worth proving can be.
Here, walk a ways, head home past
the flame orange neon sign that says Alterations.
I have never seen it before.
return to top