Wintering Somewhere Warm
Black port jars stored for winter's coming,
car stereo clanging The Mamas & The Papas,
retreats most hasty beaten shoes path leather,
recent events making the distinction clearer,
between what was thought and wished about.
Diving in beneath snowbank calmness, the
mannequins we mistook as suitors, as lovely ladies
faded bright in cotton swayings, bouncers and
buckeyes all the things we had left of Ohio,
left of chilled nights in Akron motels.
Little-known was Pyrrhic nature, the cheap
signs long-faded for topless places which didn't
even stay open past midnight anymore, the
city fathers reshaping downtown's face to their own,
never the kind of teenage runaways, Soviet-chic enthusiasts.
Torching scaffolds drunken with night's rainwater
and beer sweat, it was all I could have the bearing
of, interplay of freshly-tasted concrete and
scents of Turkish kitchens hounding us homeward,
so gung-ho with fiery memory of the Empire State,
seeming sandy as rural routes of Kazakhstan.