poem16 Sep 2019 08:00 pm

Anthony DeGregorio

Ghosts in the windows of apartment buildings
Along the Metro North Harlem Railroad Line
No longer look up or scramble to spread the curtains
For a better view with every rumble of each passing train,
Or to scare a weary commuter, or the 
Weekend passengers heading to the city 
For a play and dinner perhaps, maybe just a stroll
Through Times Square to observe lives and sights
They would never see back home in Valhalla, NY,
An hour north of the city, who may casually glance
Upward in the darkened direction of a broken window, through its
Spiderweb of cracks, and into a sagging cobweb of time-
Infested silence, catching a hollow eye socket or two 
Of the lonely apparitions.  
They have grown bored with life they no longer possess,
And remain suspended before TVs
Tuned to seventy-year-old movies
Whose stars are as dead as they are.
Translucent couch potatoes, their
Skinless feathery fingers 
Attached to complex remote controls
In futile attempts to depress the proper buttons,
As they drop Princess Leia vinyl wine glasses of Scotch, or
Neon-red Elmo Sippy Cups of vitamin-rich carrot juice
They’ve forgotten how to grasp or even drink from,
Struggling with anything tangible in the urban morning darkness
Of abandoned rooms and vacant lofts.  An orange aura of 
Juice-infused mist veils the simmering air.  A warm carotene pulp oozes, 
Puddles on the floor, condenses where their feet once felt the plush carpets and 
Stained hardwood of the living.  Exasperated, they head to windowless bathrooms 
To squat and rise repeatedly upon sinks and wicker hampers, their vacuousness 
Twerking to the moist drone of lavatory Muzak from ventilation fans.  They 
Long for an assumption into the fetid rapture of humidity’s exhaust 
Before finally giving up after unsuccessfully trying to flush themselves 
Down high efficiency toilets, and squeeze through hair & scum-clogged 
Drains, sadly unnoticed amid the uncanny melancholy of afterlife.

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