she swept up

the whole scene

the squashed cockroach, the frenzy of feasting ants, black and beady.

when the broom hit

all the living things were ignited

like atoms instantly hot.

she dropped the meal in the dirt behind the kitchen

and the chaos dissipated

the source of death was gone

to be dealt with in nature’s quarters.

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what of this [precious] life

First, they placed a white L-shaped sticker on the subway map. To hide the prepared changes.

Then, when the new line opened up, they replaced all the signs.

For the first 6 months, the signs pointed to A. Now they point to B. It happened in a blink of an eye.

Like a memory. A glance. A fleeting dream.

One day, I won’t remember what it looked like when it pointed to A. One day, they won’t even know that A existed.

She stood with a hand-held loudspeaker on the train platform, like a broken record repeating,

“Please watch out for the uneven floor surfaces. Please watch out.”

Everyday. For a week.

One day, she was gone.

The loudspeaker remained in her place.

It hung by a rope from its new owner – a cement column near the fence. A man’s voice replaced hers,

“Please watch out for the uneven floor surfaces.”

Please watch out.

I looked at my reflection on the passing train.

My body in the rushing colors and blurring glass windows over the not-so-subtle hum of metal against track.

When the train was gone,

so was I.

 

Jan 2015