The brunettes and the bankers
stroll behind me in threes, each in love
with one who can’t exist, each surveying
corners. It’s 5:45 and the call to prayer
flares up from the Modern Mosque.
The crows in the magnolia trees
are calling for plunder. Boys shoot
baskets in the schoolyard,
and seventeen green walnuts
have fallen since this morning.
Life’s decadent against our needs,
and our needs are unpredictable
and terrifying. I was here nine hours ago;
my shirt was creased, my hands
smelled good, and the stray dogs
disregarded me. I descended
the subway steps while the brunettes
and the bankers crossed their legs
under desks and counted things
that didn’t need to be counted:
the minutes love decides against us.