Thursday, December 3, 2009

view from an urban fault line

each morning
driving up the avenue, I see the palette on my right:
prim clapboards, freshly painted
in warm, classic tones
tall, sloping rooflines
wide, sweeping porches
antique, stained glass,
sidewalks well-tended
and fertilized foliage.
freshly scrubbed,
expressing seriousness
and careful intention
on getting somewhere.

on my left
not fifty feet away, another painted scene:
scattered, overturned trash barrels
belching out debris,
cars, not new, disabled
Cracked foundations,
siding in obvious need of repair,
plywood sheets
where single-pane windows used to be.
in tones of varying shades,
all of them darker
(or is it dirtier?)
than white.

Here is the polarity
of my morning city commute.
Here is has,
and there is has not,
divided by route 83
and the apparent intentions of a few
to make the lives of so many
Less than.

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