Poem: A March Day in NYC, 2020

Inspired by Coronavirus sweeping into New York City and by the song, “I Can’t See New York from Tori Amos’ Scarlett’s Walk.

Seeing what Scarlett saw
open eyes, open jaw,
My core is fluttering fast

in white covered turbulence.
Winding, I wince and wince,
free-falling through the big vast.

Down from the cloudy side,
fogginess citywide,
I’m flushed in virulent air.

Seeping within the white,
NYC neon lights
beaming sans any fanfare.

In my periphery.
Liberty Verdigris
holding the torch on her isle.

Swerving through tower greys,
I feel a strange malaise
sweeping in all the while.

all the while…
all the while…
all the while…

On my way onto ground,
pigeons swoop and surround.
Making Manhattan their own.

And oh how the singing birds,
previously not as heard,
resonate sharply in tone.

Awash in the foggy daze,
I stagger through the maze,
lingering sidewalk to lane.

Gone are the walking crowds
Gone is the Yawker loud
The sea of humanity’s drained.

Broadway lights all dimmed out.
Wall Street herd all thinned out.
Union and Times are a void.

I make my way underground,
hardly a soul around.
Throng of the subway’s devoid

of the din,
of the roar,
of the whir…

Back on the streets I go,
stumbling to and fro,
dizzying myself recklessly,

Cyclists up and down
pass me up round and round,
skidding the path carelessly.

The city that never sleeps
floors me and makes me weep.
It’s coming apart at the seams.

It’s gotta be a dream.
Wake me up from this dream!
This all can’t be what it seems.

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