Friday, January 31, 2014

7 pm, January 31

7 pm, January 31

The end of the working day – and week and term.
And yet this laborer has labor left –
A bundled load he’s trundling home tonight.

He’s left the school.  It hulks behind his back.
The football field lies white behind its fence.
But on the sidewalk, by the tree-trunks dark,
The sullied snow is melting by degrees.

He looks ahead and sees a magic sight – 
A silver train on high, with lighted cars…
It slows and pauses for its station-while –
And then – shazam!  It roars and vanishes…

New Utrecht Avenue.  He turns towards right.
He’s walking homewards, towards the waiting sea,
Which still is distant.  Here is tar, concrete –
With streetlights casting shadow prison-bars…

He walks beneath – and overhead, the trains
Come roaring by.  They drown out thought and speech.
And yet, in all of this, he finds release.

2014 January 31st, Fri, 8:30 pm
Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, New York

This describes part of a walk home from New Utrecht High School in southwest Brooklyn, along 80th Street and then along New Utrecht Avenue.  The D and M trains run here above the second road, on an old track supported by rusted iron columns.  These trains end their runs from Manhattan through Brooklyn at the Coney Island terminus.

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