the city

The city

The city was never that loud, but
people said it was, said it was big
like sequoia big which is really funny
seeing that cement and steel and
limestone and bad dreams made it
created what it was when it wasn’t
what we wanted…and I dream of it
but not often, just when the bits
of Miami nights don’t make sense
don’t make it into my thinking of
when I am waiting for the sky
to be blocked out from crossing
the street, I’m waiting but the red sky
only flashes lightning and yells & yells
thunder at me, it yells a lot

The city isn’t what I wanted when
I left, it wasn’t what it was, any more
not the culmination of 20 years;
Brooklyn, no, first JC, then the empty
Financial District then Brooklyn where
I waited for lucky gentrification like
a placeholder bookmark but I was sad
for 5 years, with warehouses refusing
to become lofts, restaurants tried
and died in the same spot until
they stuck or became clothes stores,
Out to Manhattan when I could afford it

The city was murdered by people who
didn’t care, didn’t live there, didn’t feel
it’s heartbeat daily, I did, millions of
us did…we were lab rats, experiments
wear this, don’t do that, it was Hells Kitchen
next in a pyramid of white and glass and
and indoor park, angles and blonde
wood, like art, living inside art, I found
a home in an Irish Pub on 10th and 57th

until even I got tired of the walk from
places where people were to places
where they weren’t

Then it was West Chelsea/Hudson Yards and
the city is behind me now in a long line of
places behind me but it looms, a grey
shadow that is attached to the bottom
of my shoes…walking with me everywhere
when I remember it there…until sunshine
floods my face and I forget of the murdered
city, of the friends still waiting on subways
there, of the sounds of 5th avenue under
snow, of running wth no shirt through
midtown with tourists and workers
gaping at sweaty skin and a grim smile
as I churn out another mile through
amazing mid-century ideas, through
skyscraper dreams.

The city is leaning toward desolation
but it has before and while I wait in Miami
the shadows on my feet slowly rub away
and I am left with a yelling sky and
memories of limestone sequoias &
wondering how beautiful—now that
I am immersed in roundness of Miami
such brutish straight lines could be.

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