Old Thoughts

Third Ave El


Old age has thrown its cloak on me

Blurring eyesight,

Slowing down my walk,

Blocking off old friends

Who have problems of their own…

Or more likely,

Simply died.

Who knows?

Contacts are cut off.

I survive,

Still alive, holding cups of hot tea

I wander in the maze of my memory

Through times and places

Now, wholly theoretical.

Tilley and his steeplechase,

His teeth like tombstones

Grin from a subway poster

At fourteenth, Union Square

To tempt me down to Coney Island.

Even at that time Luna Park

Was just a dream.

The snakey curves pull a moan

From the 3rd avenue El

As it twists over the housetops

On 23rd on its way to the Aquarium

At the Battery.

That old fort, inhabited by sharks

And seals and open pools

Of horseshoe crabs

Which sit like warted blisters

Lost in antediluvian contemplation.

That New York is now long gone,

With its Cascade laundry wagons,

Horsedrawn or electric.

These days the internet, full of the buzz

Of stranger’s offerings of sex and wealth

Spamming through electronic mail

Slithers through the tangled jungles

Of the kitchen middens

Of the chaos of the mind.



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