Urban Chemistry

From: Urban Chemistry

“Urban Chemistry”


An 18-month-old
picking paint flakes
off an aging sill

Twelve bullets loaded
in a pistol’s
empty magazine

Two vintage window
counter weights
concealed within the wall


A flame beneath
an antique ladle
absent from its set

The ring worn in
the Warsaw ghetto
80 years ago

Hand-crafted gauges
one-inch wide,
displayed in stretch-out lobes


Verdigris on
weathered gables,
tarnished and corroded

A vacant home
completely stripped
of plumbing Tuesday night

Cloth-covered wires
in knob-and-tube
behind the plaster walls


Eight 13mm casings
on the road

Chugging down
two 40 chrome
before the party starts

A shopping cart
on Allen Street
half filled with empty cans


That tricked out Monte Carlo
bouncing down
the Elmwood Strip

Two feet of chain
connecting lip
to nose, to ear, to brow

A custom-built tank
on a 1950’s
Panhead Hog


Hard-hats installing
girders, rivets,
braces, trusses, beams

The skeleton
of Bethlehem,
now empty and abandoned

Vibrations felt
at 2:00 A.M.
beside the railroad track


Two coffee cans
and $30 Grand
in Grandma’s old breadbox

A chain-linked fence
brought down in seconds
by a pair of snips

A sense of pride
and power
in cathedral organ pipes

Web: http://www.slipstreampress.org/issue35.html
Credit: First appeared in Slipstream 35: 88-90.