They were always coming in late, Being young. I used to do it too. That night I'd fallen asleep, not Waiting up just watching reruns Of a stupid show from nineteen Sixty-eight & he said downtown Is burning. One side of the court Square, it turned out, which is about All there is of downtown any More & she went to bed, Her mother already sleeping, Then he and I walked up the street Three blocks and watched the buildings burn.
Firemen sprayed water & cops watched And we watched the cops and the fire And the firemen, and of course they Had been fighting again, not much To say about it. I'd covered That ground before, enough to know It was like the fire and wouldn't Get better, so we didn't talk. Two in the morning, town mostly Asleep and this amazing show Inadvertently in my backyard And their lives changing, separately.