Chicago blues

Every fiber of wind made the rain more vivid,
And it did not matter where it lay wet
In a paler set of colors, quieter on a pavement,
Mute, twitching so, unbothered, staying put
According to habit; hoping so to be skyward again
In a blueness, in a sun dawn awakening,
Pure as a pane of ice stiff in a glass, sumped in a swallow.

The other sober part of me read like a funny paper
On a Sunday morning. The sawdust saloon floor was
In a hard condition. Patrons eyes were cloudy and grey
With hollow, meaningless stares. Mouths were crooked
Taking pleasure from a nicotine drag; noses, a dusky red.
Words were slurred and dirty, canopied and wasted;
I was already beaten with an emptiness, so no remorse.

Far off, the banshee cry of an ambulance, desperate
For a hospital- white and pure with the dregs, the failures,
The aberrations; numbness brought to them with
Bright needles. The peacefulness is so big, it dazes them;
And their sudden tongues with no color. And a flat-line like
A paper shadow. Wrenched from a life and rosary beads.
They sleep the big sleep, not caring how they died.

When I got home I mixed a tall cool one, slumped myself
Into an old leather chair like a bent finger and listened to
The city pour itself into my apartment- the homeless
Begging blankly as a wall; thugs vigorous with a gun;
The sick bored with a disease. I managed to fall asleep
Despite the effort of a neon light flickering on and off as if
Were anemic. The night is never for very long completely silent.

Copyright © 12/13/2018 lance sheridan®

 

Chicago blues