A red woodpecker scales the live oak, while I sleep,
the phone rings makes its erasures:
a dream in which I’m revising a list with my father—gone
the way of whole neighborhoods in the Bronx.
Robert Moses shrugs his concrete shoulders
Robert Moses, I say, drop the knife.
In the summer of 2001, I lived in the Bowery, took photographs
of police call boxes,
took the train through Newark, NJ: warehouse, community college, broadface
of the projects irregardless of choices. I was a lonely child, loved looking
at things no one would notice: Rahway, Linden, Elizabeth: the many-eyed,
bricked-up, gold-domed, on the platform waiting.
So far as we feel sympathy, we are not accomplices.
Thick rain and tree roots knuckle the sidewalk.
In Newark, NJ, the sidewalks were slate gray, dark as thunderheads
big bang big theory of charge/discharge.
As a child, I thought I could save my mother’s life by stepping in front of her.
Copyright © 2011 by Susan Briante
from her book Utopia Minus published by Ahsahta Press