Monday, February 5, 2007

Series: In New York

for Sophia

grey winter noon—
from inside his moving truck
faint church bells

                                  overcast bus trip—
                               he rubs her neck
                                     from across the aisle

in the looseness
  of this window—
a shakier us

                               The double world
                               of means to me
                               and means to you;
                               webs of snowdrop tangle
                               past the bus window.

local sushi bar—
he figures the Japanese
of a wall-hung haiku

                               all that's left
                               in the prize machine—
                               an empty pack of smokes

heating-up car—
the radio marquee
advertises for itself

                                 run-down minimart—
                               beer flags writhing
                                        with it all

what moves beneath
works to favor hope;
for one year's time
I have slept alone.

                                   uptown dining—
                               double the price
                                         for nothing

midtown thrift shop—
my only pick of shoes
on a customer's feet

                               Chinese supermarket—
                               my spring water spills
                                 onto leaking water

ground zero—
'post no bills' by
the building to be

                               The closer I come,
                               the farther it crawls
                               inside to die;
                               from behind, a man
                               barking his own 9/11.

beneath the el—
Arab music blaring
through a sunroof

                               midnight express—
                               two teens brag
                               about fighting a cop

late to the Met—
we've only time
for a short snack

                               Central Park in seconds—
                                 a bug on the map

Dare say I carry my bones
so far from home...
how many moments
could I put between
the el and this moon?

                               taming the bull—
                               her perfect dismount
                               to Wall Street

Blood Alley—
above, a metal ladder

                               sardine can subway—
                               an old head tells how
                               it used to be

midwinter's noon—
a pale leaf crosses
the intersection

                               What but raindrops
                               do I have to offer
                               in lended hand?
                               The uptown winter breeze
                               forgets me where I stand.

Manhattan sunset—
'everything hurts' tagged
on the pharmacy wall

                               leaving Manhattan—
                               clustered pigeons circling
                               a steel crane

Long ago
I kept a dream, of pushing
through the past;
plastered to the window,
a eucharist of moon.

                               early evening depot—
                               loose caution tape
                               trembling on the ground

*Blood Alley is a small, curved backstreet in Chinatown where supposedly the old tongs, or gangs, would bring victims to be killed.