The new streets aren’t like
the mean streets or the gold streets
or even the neighborhood streets,
they are just streets where a variety
of interconnected things just seem to happen.
Streets of coincidence and timing,
streets of random dumb luck and
a convalescence of circumstance
all conspiring to put that mish-mash
into some sort of coherent form.
The streets speak gibberish,
their word is unreliable and
sloppy and full of the worst
sorts of half-truths and half-lies,
the street’s word has been run over.
The Dead End is a cul-de-sac now,
The No Outlet is filled with new houses,
the worn Earthen path has given way to
the Urban Street Garden Club and their
rose bushes and lilacs.
The liquor store is a tax accountant office,
the train tracks are cut off,
the Church is empty,
the diner is boarded,
but the flower shop is ok.
The corner store is a franchisee,
the tire shop is gone,
the video store is shuttered,
the movie house burnt down.
The cat lady house is empty.
Her corner is now empty on hot summer
nights, once men came creeping
with their hot summer desires and greasy
money. She’s been gone a long time. She’s
probably dead, from either all that between the legs
or all that nothing in her head.
The street might have known, if it had
the chance, to tell us what it had heard,
but those days are gone and summers and
winters make us pretend it never had anything
to say in the first place. Those street are gone.