Cross Town

Cross Town

Morning,
And back to back the Sabbaths
Ignore each other into night.

It’s workaday, workaday
And the perilous journey cross town.

Cross town
Without a star,
Cross town,
Where the hill has been consumed,
Cross town
Where the modern buffalos hunt him
Sorting fumes, screeching at each
other.

There is an eight hour island of
forgetfulness
Cross town.

“Everyone has to have a job.” His father had been drilling that into him forever.  H.M. knew that. But knowing it didn’t help. Even though he didn’t know a cabbage from a radish, he day dreamed of working on a farm.

In the dream, he would wake up early, the owner of the farm would call him to come to breakfast where he and a few other guys would eat and laugh together, and then go out to do the day’s work.

Either the owner, or one of the more experienced hands (…hands…weathering into each day and aging like the fleshy leather they really were) would show him what to do, and he would do it. Whatever he didn’t know, didn’t make any difference because they would show him, and then he would know..he would be learning how to do something real, something with a purpose, helping something grow, and then what he helped grow would be useful. He would be helping people have something good to eat. He would imagine the smile on a kid’s face biting into a watermelon and in his fantasy of fantasies he could see the watermelon smiling back, happy to be useful.
Why can’t I be useful?

That’s how the day dream would end, and he would get off the bus, and walk into the innards of a brick and glass building, walk into the people can, everyone else called an elevator, and go to what he deliberately had re-titled his “orifice”.

There he would chew up the names of people he didn’t know, and  their bank statements, and if they were qualified for the mortgage, if he could digest the information, he would poop out his approval and they could buy the house they wanted. If not, he would throw it up and mark it as indigestible, or, unqualified.

Qualified according to the money measurement…nothing else mattered. No one cared if they would be good neighbors, or if they had children, or if they knew anything about anything worth knowing. Of course it all made sense in its own way.

But that was the heart of the problem for him. Everything made sense in its own way, but nothing made any sense beyond its own way. No roads led to Rome…no roads could ever take him to what other people called their home.

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