My third book, Shadow and Memory is almost ready to self-publish. One of the poems in it is entitled “Cityscapes.” It is a four-part poem that records my impressions of a city our family visited last fall.
Urban areas always make me think of Yeats’s poem “The Second Coming.” One of the lines says, “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold.” The poem suggests this feeling of falling apart is because we are spiritually adrift, lost. This is how I always feel in cities—as if the unraveling of humanity is happening all around me. “Cityscapes” is essentially a set of scenes that express this feeling.
Below is part one of “Cityscapes.” If you like it, I hope you’ll pick up a copy of Shadow and Memory when it comes out in the next few weeks!
Cityscapes I. Driving through the city, the frayed edges of our social fabric dangle everywhere: a woman who’s a bramble of raspberry split ends staggers behind a wire cart a stringy looking guy swiping at the air under a bridge unravels into sentence fragments people using cardboard signs to pan for gold heartstrings hang around intersections sidewalks evaporate garbage wheels shred retread and the whole scene starts to revolve twist spiral until the streets slither overhead and skyscrapers are steel tatters hanging in a starry void below.