Tales from a Windy City

by air (part i)

grey skies on Dublin;
the air stretched thin
by incessant leaving. 
I hold my breath,
soon too I will be gone.


by air (part ii)

a mosaic of screens
shows me nothing
but grains of time,
falling so slowly they've turned to glass,
and in their reflection,
I'm flat out on a towpath
sounds rushing past drunk ears,
laughter on the breeze. 


liquid gold through the clouds;
midnight sun dazzles
on a lake the size of the sea. 


sinking beers at a sunken diner
sweating dimes over 312s
and feeling great rumbling trams
roll central past level crossings
as the railroad comes to life
on that deep dark full moon night
of twice midnight hour
and I'm back in the days of ¢15 burgers
and bright neon lights.

back home,
the cat hunts the moon,
tail whipping.


white butterfly on green grass,
a series of overgrown avenues,
fat pancakes, black coffee in a diner;
watching for signs.


Kedzie (Brown Line)

the day is so hot that things ripple when I look at them. the world is barely holding itself together, sweating and cursing under its own weight. cicadas wearily attempt a cacophony, but their hearts aren't in it. on top floor balconies, old women hang washing out to dry.


riding the L

and avenues
and streets
and cars
and rickety wooden tenements
and dusty back roads
and dumpsters
and trees
and so many trees
and slats
and white picket
and ladders propped on gutters
and bricks
and flaking murals
and looming skyscrapers
and tv masts
and spiralling fire escapes
and sandstone blocks
and "ice cold water for a dollar sir, ice cold,"
and signs: STARVING - haven't eaten for 3 days, please help

and glass towers
and turquoise waters
and cameras
and selfies
and thumping SUVs
and huge roaring fire engines
and overhead trains
and looming dens of art
and palettes by tracks
and trains terminating at Kimball
and houses
and slats
and parking spots
and screeching cicadas
and pavement sparrows
and cars
and streets,
and avenues
and avenues.


as bright as it came
so too departs the sun;
the blunt teeth of the city
now burned on my eyes.