Eighth Avenue Zen
by Liz Dolan


The mongrel Greyhound spits fumes
into the crackled face of the bandana-necked
man perched on the curb at Forty-first Street.
For an hour he hums and sits in a trance.
Then scuttles across glistening macadam
on elbows and knees as though he had
schemed this show all his life.

Cabs roll their eyes, trucks grind
their teeth, the cop eats his badge. For minutes,
the spiked ladies and carapaced gents
stop and stare as though sighting horseshoe
crabs and fiddlers at the Jersey shore.
I catch his eye, he winks.

He lifts himself onto the opposite curb
and taps sideways towards the river,
sensitive to light, smirking, leaving
such bedlam behind.






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