I’m standing on 10th Street. I’m not the
only one. Buildings rise like
foliage and human touch.
And so shall dig this cigarette as my last,
and rattle trains, and rot the fences
of the gardens of my body—
or without the harmony of speaking here the
many sounds and rhythms that
sound a lot like anger
when anger’s silent, like a painting, though
in the stillness of the paint itself
the painter nods or waves or asks
I’m not the only one. The pharmacy’s untitled.
The stars are there at night.
In this Humidity
the forlorn singing of the insects clings to anything
nailed down. A whole bag of
things I’m working
through, some set things that I know, like words
I know that mean "from
one place to another," the word that
"to carry." I’m standing still on 10th Street. I’m
not the only one.
The dark tastes of salt and oranges.
wander round and round. I am its thousand windows.
I think about the future
and the sea. And stay.
by Ralph Angel
From Exceptions and Melancholies: Poems 1986-2006 by Ralph Angel, published by Sarabande Books, Inc. © 2006 by Ralph Angel