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52nd St

by Lia Mastropolo

The vendors with pop-up card tables
blue and green body oils
scarves and tunics
colors like water
in a warm place
I’ve only just left
elsewhere the ice spreading
from the blocked inlet on the corner
into the heart: where I’ve been,
where I’m going
the need to vanish from solid objects.
Flight seems most likely
in these months.
52nd Streetglow of tax offices
man in a Statue of Liberty balloon costume
Al-amanah Islamic Place, open late
stands between me and emptiness,
lights the walk home.
And the KicksUSA on the corner
where glossy Jordans aren't the only thing
you can buy with a night off
and a roll of cash.
And the ragged protest
with boom box and flag
the leaving and coming
from the elevated train station
where, walking home from work late
I find safe passage
again and again.


Read all work by Lia Mastropolo


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