City Snow (12114 bytes)

by Janet I. Buck

A warm June day and still it snowed.
Ice-cubes were the people kind.
Sad and laugh-less in the city’s colon.
Skies that somehow scraped themselves
like razors rusted by the humid.
Bumper anxious seemed to spread.
We came to play in party bunkers.
Didn’t know there would be war.
Traffic was a backed-up toilet.
Clouds of smoke in bitter puffs.
A car just, wham, exploded
merely feet away from us.
Fire hoses stretched the streets
like arms and legs of rattlesnakes.
The body empty. Black and gray
as old briquettes that begged
forgetting flames to burn.
Sunday morning news on pasted screens
in lobbies full of busy ants
without a hill or destination.

Melon skins of people sandwiched.
City indigestion twisting: "A man was
murdered yesterday...beaten, tied, and dragged
by ropes to rolling wheels on gravel roads.
Wonder who we should have blamed..."
No one in the lobby moved.
The justice eyebrow to be plucked.
Ingrown hairs of such despair.
Morning breath of progress reeked.
Going home was such relief,
I almost kissed the walls and door knobs
of our quiet country life. A couple grazing
in the grass, shaded by a sighing tree.
I took a shower, scrubbed so hard,
I heard the water’s flesh like
hiccups stopping Sunday church.
Our next vacation would be real.
We would stay in ocean waves where
ruination didn’t redden breathing flesh
or choke us with its wicked reins.


About the author: Janet Buck teaches writing and literature at the college level and is widely published in journals, e-zines, and anthologies around the world. Her poetry sites on the web have received more than thirty awards, including the distiguished Predators and Editors: Author's Site of Excellence and The Circle of the Muses Award of Inspiration. "Writing," she says, "is a tuba in a long parade that chases pain and sorrow to its dissolution." Her poems also appear in Psychozoan in the Spring 1998 issue.


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Copyright 1998 by Janet I. Buck