ebbortz

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

1968 pittsburgh

walking down
the steepest part
of buena vista street
cobblestones
slick with a thin film
from rain
she said we need to talk
stopping
at the broken city steps
     a map that had become
     an outline of my being
she said
you aren't serious yet
about your life
i need to move on
she said
with a quiet maturity
i guess i wasn't ready for

at nineteen
i felt as old
as the paris commune
thinking this pain
was just a part
of what the future
would lead to

there was still
a meeting to organize
a decision to make about a draft card
rent to pay
the haze below the city steps
reluctantly spread out
toward the rivers
as true and as unexpected
as this instant in time

the way forward from here
was about 4am getups
to make it to the laborers
daily hiring hall
the dirtiest & discarded jobs
     the prize
(i might still be paying for)

but from illusion
there can come
thousands of small steps
     & without a calendar or astronomy
new seasons
can barge right in
& transform
every living image
memory
the only tool
needed
to keep
a vision

--- e b bortz

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