Q52: a short lyric

30 May


Q52: a short lyric


they haven’t touched the bridge in over eighty years

that’s why

after the hurricane snuck in

the trains don’t run over it no more

you have to take the bus across Cross Bay

and in those thirty minutes that you have

after waiting in the cold huddling in around you

you’ll sit on a hard and angry seat

watching the world like a weary guest:

the old Russian women talking too loudly on the phone

that they barely know how to operate

in a language that all other passengers

but me

do not understand

and after the call is done

before the next appointments are to be made

their bodies will tenderly convulse

because the nearly dead are made to dance

for our forced mocking sympathy and our amusement like the dole

the men that stand pace anxiously

in the two step space that they’re allotted

before a workday becoming prison

leaves them slumped along the railing springing  

like the wheels below along cement

the pimply adolescents and their pockmarked older siblings

read books they were assigned

while futile anger and frustration rages in digitized decibels

from their headphones

the aging allochthonous junkies who still make the trip

have come to pay their servile and pitiful respect

to scions of their old connects

from stories of seventies’ glory days

when shooting galleries replaced alleyways

and the cops didn’t have to pretend not to give a shit

the young and pretty neighborhood girls

they’re sitting, waiting, too

crosslegged and small and nearly blue

or gold, sometimes I cannot tell

because despite our same path here every day

we have all been detached, completed, from ourselves

these people just like me

are all I do not know too well

but try to meagerly

because this ride is the same one along which I’ll return

until the bridge is fixed

and we aren’t broken

lonely anymore


(for Claudia Rankine)


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Jack Tsoy Tumult

Morose Pontifications and Other Poetic Ramblings

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