Posted by rhoff1949 on July 15, 2010 in Featured


It’s a window next to impossible
to miss unless
you’re hurrying to a particular place
or obsessed with a recent song, or carrying
a face, not just anyone’s,
with you at the time.

I confess I’ve stood there
under the sign lettered GUNS – JEWELRY – LOANS
many times, the window full of
risked, lost, or stolen things,
grieving people’s or dead people’s things,
novelties and knives.

Guilt. Indecision. Everything
is used; each of the hundreds of watches
shows a different time. Guitars,
untuned, hang carefully, gratefully
silent. Which ones, of these alarm clocks,
above the guns, above the stuffed owls,

have cut off a dream and sent a man out
to his death? Some of these paintings,
stacked on the floor, have hung in the finest
banks, and, although it’s kept quiet,
there are those who’ll say the diamonds
were swept from the highway after a fatal crash

that no one remembers. Not even
the broker, the nodder, the blank-faced one
who asks no questions, who, come night,
empties the window, leaves the drawer open
and empty, leaves one light on, sighs,
locks up, drags shut the rusty gates.

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