January ’95

I walk
pleasantly drunk
in the new snows,
communing with the
bracing air,
in some vaguely
Germanic fashion,
my ancestors.

The Avenue snakes ahead
Ridgewood through

It lingers
out there
like some
reflection gone
and I try to
snatch at it
with gloved
hands and intentions.

it is a night to
set things
top-side up,
a night to
sing the right songs,
the good songs
in a good key
that will leave the

Across the street,
there’s a gang of
young boys
in satin varsity jackets
kicking around a garbage can;
they are screaming
for something to come,
perhaps the
brutes or the
angels or a
slicing nor’easter to
bust off the top
of the town
like an old bottle cap.

The lamplights recede on.

There’s more
coming, and
I’ve got
the nerve
to see
it through.


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