The City is Alive!

In response to Richard Lopez and for Mel C. Thompson


Often he called himself “He” as he felt distant from himself__
If “April is the cruelest month,” then its cruelty is its bright sunshine__
He walked into and out of the porn shop with pride__
At the corner of Kearny and California he could no longer look up at the
Fates, they had been watching him though, from a skyscraper__
Walking thru the Financial District he felt small compared to his
generation tapping their $500 toes and talking ‘bout the stock market or
a weekend getaway__
He walks into Wells Fargo on Market Street__
(This poem is happening “now.”)
(Let’s Oppen it up!)
He writes the poem and deposits his $166 state tax refund into his
checking account__
Dances with Saint Patrick in Yerba Buena Gardens drunk on the City__
Pop radio songs pour out of the Virgin Megastore closing sale onto the
shoe shining sidewalk mid-day pedestrian rush hour foot traffic__
UPS brown truck parked one wheel up on the sidewalk blinking its back
yellow lights where a movie theater used to be on the south side of 
Market Street near Sixth Street
__He rolls up his sweatshirt sleeves to catch some sun



Jonathan Hayes

Jonathan Hayes lives by the San Lorenzo River in Santa Cruz, California where he breaks down grocery pallets at Trader Joe's, also by the river. His new book, Ghetto Sunshine, poems, 1997 - 2021, is forthcoming.


Edited for Unlikely by Jonathan Penton, Editor-in-Chief
Last revised on Sunday, August 15, 2021 - 22:01