Friday, October 31, 2008


Today was a sad day.
Had pho with D.
Shy of Manhattan,
the J enters the king borough
and quickly turns away,
curves back toward Brooklyn.

Then on an everyday Tuesday
afternoon it all at once encrystals:
A bomb-scare morning, the Port Authority
Bus Terminal cleared out by men with badges,
plainclothes, an annoyed commute and late to work.
It was a real tap-tap, sir there’s a line day.

But on the downtown A,
a man next to me’s starting
a book I love. I point and give the thumbs-up.
Then a young woman with an interesting face
and holding a square, clear vase
of purple flowers smiles
at some children in pink, one girl playing
with the other’s ponytail; while a band
whose songs I’ve never been able to get into
suddenly all sound perfect. The lyrics appear
like the scene unfolding before me, into which soon steps
a thugged-out violinist, with an ammo T-shirt
and corn-row braids: He plays,
and, piqued, I pop out my earphones and listen
to subway street-violin, a passionate caterwauling
I’d never known existed.
I give him my last gold Pocahontas dollar
as we ruck into the station, thirty charmed blocks
as the rat scurries.


scram. said...

These just keep getting better. However, posting two poems in a row that both use the word "ruck" might be a bit much. Make sure to space those poems out in your first collection, or I'll ruck you up.

Jake Freedom said...

Don't edit the editor.

He's rucking crazy.