Year of the Rat
Union Station: immaculate trap
of coming and going and mostly already gone,
where you lean against the marble slab
of someone else’s mastery.
The stationary weight of a huge Columbus:
a statue that has never seen beyond this high faith,
this new land. Here he is shoreless.
A salt pillar struck with the sure same visage.
The drake gaze of discovery, the big fisted I claim
and if the city it faces left hungry enough,
because of this, then maybe a monument
licked clean to the bone, made only to read:
“INDOMITABLE COURAGE …
DIED MDIV” as a point of departure
outside the thousand crude lines that cut across
this apiary, out and out into the nation’s honeyed et al …
of course there is someone in this town
more desperate than you,
whose hand-me-downs you won’t be wearing.
Of course the horse flesh of factory work
is the same in D.C. as in Detroit.
Of course the whistle of an empty coffee pot
left too long on the stove is not a whistle at all;
will not wake you up for whatever train back.
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