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I Live in New York

I am happiest
near the ocean,
where the changing light
reminds me of my death
& the fact that it need not be fatal–
 
yet I perch here
in the midst of the city
where the traffic dulls my senses,
where my ears scream at sirens,
where transistor radio blasts
invade my poems
like alien war chants.
 
But I never walk
the streets of New York
without hoping for the end
of the world.
 
How many years
before the streets return to flowers?
How many centuries
before the towers fall?
 
In my mind’s eye,
New York falls to ruins.
Butterflies alight upon stones
and poppies spring
out of the asphalt fields.
 
Why do I stay here
when I love the ocean?
Because the ocean lulls me
with its peace.
Eternity is coming soon enough.
As monks sleep
in their own coffins,
 
I live in New York.
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