General Poetry posted November 8, 2017

This work has reached the exceptional level
A man returns to his neighborhood


by easyeverett1

A light mist of rain falls silent
on his thin, sharp-angled face.
He picks up the pace and tilts
his head to the wind. He walks
past the plundered slumber of
crumbled poverty; abandoned
by human acclimation to feral
creatures who crawl and scuff
their blood-rough nails on the
concrete diasporas of multi-ethnic,
multi-immigrant history.

He walks past and hears the
oddly familiar echoes coming
from his once attended Public
School#59. Echoes still drift
along the faded asphalt haze
of time. These echoes ring true
with elemental bones of hope:
children breaking out and through
gunmetal gray, graffiti covered
doors to be swallowed by the
saturated heat of inner-city rage.

Past gothic orthodox cathedral
mausoleums which sit darkly, like
ancient stoics, and stare through
amber, azure, and crystalline-blue
stained-glass eyes. Eyes focused
outward with a small kernel of
eternal mustard seed hope:

One day, souls will once again return
to warm the sacerdotal pews with holy
order flesh and faith.

Past the Puerto Rican market
where a dead pig's head leads
the carnivore parade of mastication
promise every day. A meat market
window of letted-blood and death
reminding one of Amsterdam where
whores sit naked in windows
exposing their pale, dissipated
bodies to the stares of dead-eyed,
vacant, male hunger outside.

He comes to the grime and grit
of an empty lot covered by old
and broken concrete slabs. He
stops and lets his mind drift back
in time to watch a woman who
wears a ratted, fox-tail wrap
around her neck.

She holds a long, un-filtered
cigarette, loose, between her
two bright, fuchsia painted lips.
She wears a black velvet hat
with veil to her nose and a
straight, black dress that flows
below her knees and stops,
mid-calf, above her shiny-black,
high-heel, patent leather shoes.
He can almost see, through the
blur of a chiaroscuro choreography,
his mother, visiting with the
Kazakhstan neighbors of his youth
in this daytime, dreamlike memory.

She would hold her cigarette
between fuchsia lips and wear
that ratted fox-tail wrap until
one day, finally, the cancer cough
began to spew Chesterfield blood
on the molted fox-tail head of her
belov-ed fur.

Then she went to bed.
Went to sleep.
And died.

Quietly pigeons gathered and cooed
on that slate-gray, New York City dawn.

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