This City Hands Me Myths; I Hand Them Back.
Today happened on accident and underground. I spent it missing
brass tiles in a barrel-vaulted concourse for sound, and sound for
solace. I pursed my lips, kissed a wall
made of whispers, and decided to once again listen to what it told me.
To leave with or be left
by the first stranger to mistake me for a pillar. Or to be a pillar,
unable to leave. Another train,
another tunnel turned gospel by headlight. According to different shades
I'm a dirty hippie, and any trash bag swept from a storm grate can
apotheosize above skyscrapers.
I swear, if I see another thing shipped to the sky. I swear, if the sky.
Say something else.
Say the stars can be as drunk with all this as I imagine. That our
windows keep a kind of time,
code our longings in light--amber, bruise-colored, absence--and transmit
to gaseous eyes
with burning lids that close only once. Yesterday, a man wearing a sign
said, not long.
He showed me how to make this city a garden from any angle by facing
trees in the park
and fencing my field of vision with my hands. Tomorrow, I'll go to
where I laid beside a woman
I'd never see again outside of sleep, to where every word we never
spoke was either a city I hoped
we'd live in, or a cinder dusting an ashtray whose smoke I woke to.
Someday I'll stop measuring
my distance from certain memories in fire escapes. I'll stop
mistaking a cloud for a child's face
behind rooftop playgrounds' chain-link. I'll walk to the edge
of the garden overgrowing an elevated railway
and throw down the only holy word I know. I'll see if it becomes a
dove before it hits the pavement.