Poem: Burn, Welland, Burn

I watched the city
As it turns to rust and dust
New dreams unfolding
While old memories are laid to rest
The paint has faded
New concrete gleams
Rubble and bricks
Sidewalk stains telling stories

Faces of once old friends
Now greying and wide-eyed
Threatening words and intentions
Displaying junked-out bravado
Numb and dumb and bitter
Others I knew have become
People unrecognizable
Their wanting overcomes all modesty
Their ignorance is mournful bliss

I watch the buildings fall
Torn down into nothing
To become another empty field
For policemen to walk dogs
Or so we are led to believe
All that once was
Mourned for their loss, we remember
And give ourselves reasons to argue
Our fierce pride misguided
And we are left with only blame
A few pieces of stone in a brownfield
A fence with a warning
Framing the realtor signs
That are already faded

I see both sides of the bridge
Neither the same, never to meet
In parking lots and bars
In houses and apartments
Everyone just hiding
Everyone wanting more
With the little that’s left
And so much more unnoticed

The streets are waiting
For the whole world to come
Le monde est un vampire
Le monde est à venir
While squabbles between teams
Fight for their agendas
And everyone loses
Just for some flat water
To dip in the oars
And cut a line down it

Neighbors drink loudly
Going unnoticed
Hopeless and happy
Until passing police vehicle
Deafens the traffic
Racing while on their cellphones
There’s sirens in the city
Urgency in the distance
But this too is unnoticed
As the glasses clink

Two tall towers
Knife to the sky
Big black and gray
Rose City Hardcore
At an odd angle
The arsonists haven’t hit it yet
Only because
Old metal does not succumb to flame
It is defeated by rust

©2013 James Takeo

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