Origin irving-penn-cigarette-and-lips-new-york-before-1961/

In the street
Between the picket signs
In a city
That’s always seeing
The worst of it
She holds
On to her cigarette
Like a concrete

Looking over the faces
All the
Hands with clinched fists
Hot blood and anger
She moves
Running to my table

She says it’s these
When we have
Time left to keep
And we talk so
Much about
But earth is not waiting
We need to do things
For us
We need to be open
We need to fight being

She brushes her hair from her face
And you can see the scars
On the inside of her arm
And she says
We all become our parents
And what we hate
choking on
Conditioned conversations
And the words
We don’t say
‘every life
Has suffering
And every life has loss and pain
That’s what makes it living’
She can’t remember who said it
But it doesn’t sound vain
And she lights another cigarette

looking outside
you almost feel
Like you’re looking backward in time
You almost feel different
the need to explain yourself
And the restlessness
you see her
Golden hair
shifting in her seat
Her eyes on fire
Her nails championing
Last weeks polish
Bitten down
And you know
Somewhere in time
Looking back
The worst things
Will not be the things we fear
Or stay up thinking about
It will be unexpected casualties
From unexpected avenues
Born like impulsive words
And decisions
At that light
On that corner
In that minute …
Under cat calls
And knives
And even though
The world is flawed
With hot blood
And picket signs
You remember
A single phone call
On this day
For this year
Marking your calendar
For the rest of your life
It was the one that
Took her away


2 thoughts on “1961

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s