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I never cared much for car talk,
But when he speaks, I'm intrigued,
And I don't know why.

Most men speak in tones that imply
I don't know anything,
Can't understand simple machines,
Have never seen an engine block,
And just want to watch as they talk.
But he is genuinely fascinated
With systems and forces,
And wants to share.
His passion consumes me,
And I listen, hoping to learn.

On switchbacking forest roads,
Over potholed washboard,
By steep cliff dropoffs,
My head swims with emergency "what ifs"
But not with him.
He flies over loose gravel
And I squeal with euphoric trust and delight.
He drives twice the posted speed,
And I find myself shamelessly sunk
Into a wet seat.
He pumps the brakes
And I'm bowing to the king,
Brazenly hoping that someday
He'll flip a carnal handbrake turn,
Wondering if he cares enough to show off,
Seduced like so many before me
By oil, rubber, and gasoline.
7/25/18
Obscrea Dec 2017
I would kiss you on the battlements
I would kiss you below flying cars
I would kiss you in the rain
Or when we would dance
Underneath the stars

Just keep me close through time
And time again-
I'll never leave your side,
No matter what,
I promise.
Andrew May 2017
I could've sworn I saw a younger version of you
going in the opposite direction on High Street
I wanted to stop and say something
But I had to die a gruesome death
It's just that you looked like the edition of you
I'm ashamed to have tainted
And we've been down this road before...

Like the time we saw that guy hit that telephone pole
I knelt in the muck with a stranger in my arms
His fleeting life transfixed me to his world
But once life returned
My interest was gone

Similar to the time I saw that fox dying in the street
I left the solitude of my car to gaze into it's primal eyes
Without communication
All we could do was cry together
I couldn't decide whether to **** it or care for it
So I did neither
And just drove off
I understand it may seem cowardly
But the thought of it living and continuing
to suffer and survive was too beautiful
And the thought of responsibly nurturing it was too repellent
Not to mention those things can be dangerous
no matter how small they appear
I guess what I'm saying is bad things happen when I leave my car
Usually, I drive with the windows up and the doors locked
Loneliness fills the cabin
I opened my doors but nobody entered
Only tears filled the cabin
They cascaded out onto the road
Forming ice in the subzero winds
I lost all control
And just before I crashed
I could've sworn I saw a younger version of you
going in the opposite direction on High Street
kirk Dec 2018
When you decide to wash the car, make sure of your stability
Don't lose your footing, or any form of your own credibility
Some driveways are a dangerous place, they can be a liability
Knees get grazed through carelessness, but that's your responsibility

You've slipped down the embankment, you wasn't banking on a stumble
Coming into contact with the concrete, giving you good cause to grumble
Is it possible that your garden, has got loose parts that crumble
Or was it due to clumsiness, that made you fall and tumble

Water splashing on the car, but it wasn't that translucent
You ended up with ****** knees, from your unruly movement
Bucket dropping did not help, with your clean car improvement
I can't say that your actions, didn't cause us some amusement

We had a laugh at your expense, because your knees got scuffed
Spilling water on the path, is when your legs we're stuffed
You didn't look too happy, so I guess you wasn't chuffed
Because you fell, it'll be some time before the car gets buffed

One thing I will mention, we would not have seen you fall
If you didn't have that camera, that you wanted to install
But it has served it's purpose, cos we have seen it all
You was not completely focused, and you wasn't on the ball

Security has now been viewed, splashed water not in stealth
Is it worth the hassle, when you clean the car yourself
You don't want to trip and fall, and damage your leg health
Take it to the car wash, cos it doesn't cost much wealth

Your unfortunate leg scrapping, we hope it was not deep
But we nearly ****** ourselves, when you fell in a heap
We laughed at your misfortune, it almost made us weep
Cleaning cars come at a price, when it's done on the cheep  

Some Ideas are valid, and most of them go far
Set backs are not wanted, make sure that your on par
Be aware of your surroundings, if your washing the car
Trips around the garden could result, in a blooded scar
Based on a true story
Jordan Hudson Sep 2018
Look over there, who made that sound
Flames shooting, revving up to that rhythm
Check that out, who's gonna win this ground
Think you could use that algorithm
Power, sound, looks and all
Makes a car what it's worth here
Take over parking lots at a shopping mall
Race each other, act like a road buccaneer
Can you keep up with the little V6 that could
Go to the end of that neighborhood
Rice uncooked can never go far
You'll blow your engine in your fake tuner car
Lose your license before next meet
Enjoy riding in the baby's car seat
You drive like an old man or a mom lost driving a huge 1980's van
Or a school bus driver on icy roads or a dino driving cave man
Could you go a little faster, I have a short attention span
Seriously, you have got to be kidding me
The gas pedal is the one on the right
I'm not trying to sit here and drink a cup of tea
I'm trying to get going and get back home tonight
How could one be this freaking slow
Is this some kind of really annoying joke
I can't take this anymore, just get me home
Let's move, faster than this
Let's go, accelerate already
You aren't dismissed
There is a speed limit, just keep it faster but steady
My old granny can drive faster this, stick to the
plan, get ready
How about you drive like a businessman
That is late to work driving to New York
Office job with a bossy manager fatter than pork
Who sits at her desk with a beef patty stuck on her fork
Give it up and stuff her mouth with a old nasty cork (hey)
Keeps on eating every single day, she would be the one to bring down Santa's sleigh midway to West Coast bay to deliver some kids toys with so much delay that he cries as he looks up in the sky while Santa isn't there yet with his supply but if you magnify the sky you can still see him all the way in Shanghai all because of this fatty bringing down a sleigh, make way for this large celestial body as it crash lands upon the new airports runway
Look over there, who made that sound
Flames shooting, revving up to that rhythm
Check that out, who's gonna win this ground
Think you could use that algorithm
Power, sound, looks and all
Makes a car what it's worth here
Take over parking lots at a shopping mall
Race each other, act like a road buccaneer
Can you keep up with the little V6 that could
Go to end of that neighborhood
Rice uncooked can never go far
You'll blow your engine in your fake tuner car
Lose your license before next meet
Enjoy riding in the baby's car seat
About car meets and Christmas, just a big joke poem
CK Baker Jan 2018
who lit the candles
placed eloquently
behind purple rock?
the sculpted radiance,
chapel grace
wound in a chosen
defined way
down the spiral
stone stairs

street cars dawdle
alongside
the packer slew
biding merchants
and frontmen
shuffle their wares
as the madman
and pock face
sing their
holy blues

cut jazz echoes
over the accompanying
gabble and drone
incense and haze
pour from
a lower trap door
sack fish, truffles
and splendid crafts shine
inside the stained glass fronts

a wide mouth
snapper
with a bloated tongue
greets the
morning tide
(not camera shy
in the least!)
fish traps
and beaneries
dot the busy causeway

hula hoops
and ballers
join the
cobaine stage
favoured rogues
and mac jacks
speak easy
of the big daddy

beth’s triple by pass
taking firm hold on
tricky ****
and the nutcracker
maze ways,
taggers and
lost tunnels
of cu chi
strike a
nerving blow

a poised finger man
belts out his tune
(with a sniff sock
and iterating glare)
his nosey neighbors
cut artisan bread
(with a white wine
and jelly spread)
midwives push forward
for an afternoon
toddle and stroll
Walking
Talking to the air
Waiting
Waiting for an answer
Drinking
Waiting for her
Thinking
Thinking of roses
Breaking
Car racing
Hands shaking
Crows
The crows crowd the
My regrets
A man waits for his ex lover at a bar. She doesn’t show and he begins drinking, sinking wallowing in shame. He gives up drives and spins out of control in anger.  He hits his lover waiting for him on the corner of the street. depression sets in and death surrounds
Robin Carretti Aug 2018
Hearts another beat a second
A+ made the grade rare meat
Why is everything told to
us in a heartbeat
This is getting way too sweet
"Lips took Beeswax" bittersweet

Someone got stung B-
Strong sound muffler
Joyride Owl Hoot clever
Sweet and sourpuss
honey babe

Her mustard lips of custard
Hot temperature rising
The spicy lady opening
up new horizon gate

Too many sad rides
empty plates last joyride
Gas empty blame the county
Why did we call this joyride
without knowing
your fate

The others are more noticed
Fashionably they came late
Dine and the Wine joyride
romanced money upfront
advanced

Lips like jewels left their stale
You were the chosen one taken
for a ride from
a crooked male

Like bushel big loot basket
Rock the Kasbah rocket
Golden joyride ticket the
pickpocket
Getting away with ******
****** lips in the gasket

The joyride so beat looked
disheveled new love
unraveled
So messy but **** neat
looking, Lexus,
She looks mighty fine like
Venus, I beg you to zoom

And the love after all the treats
Sherlocked in his room
The devil made me do it
All flushed and deep red
Hearing his joyride of beats
What was really going
through her head
Hard rock ambient
painter deviant

The holiday like racing hot rod
Harvest Halloween of a joyride
Two peas in dark maze pod
Igniting a hot fire
Her lips need to decide
Who was underneath the
fumes of his fire

The coffee taste accelerating
Do we feel the pulsing beat
What a high anxiety peak
High intense flavor
You waiting for his joyride
Christmas and Hannukah
Tree to decide that's easier
But wait for true love above all
the gifts to deliver
Like bedrock meeting
Monster ride plant-eating Bug
More slugs my chinch
Inchworm of books at Joyride
College Dorm horn alarm
Manifestation enjoying
her joyride
What a conniver
Greece with my niece
vacation
Basil New rival tea
Pomegranate Cherry-bomb
Blonde Bombshell
Culture novelty joyride
Ring my servant bell
Met their sanity tomb

Her hand's dainty they shine
and sparkle
Her lips know how to jingle
Arace for hearts of stories
and memories
Always the death hand takes
a ride to the winding road of
the cemeteries
Just stay for the moment
think about the
Joyride forth of July
Our firecrackers went off at
the same time
Brie cheese favorite time
English tea and crackers
Like two lips sublime read
her diaries in his designer dockers

Going to the end of the earth lips
light up New York City galleries

Needing the fresh corner
Sunset taking lowrider Boulevard
Hollywood Oh! No world
Wildly satanic or the carefree type
Her joy smile he's sold on skype
Benevolent triad remembering
The mad magazine
MLM Maserati longevity Master
Of the joyride gun blaster
"Lips build like a Pyramid"
Becoming irresistible
Not to humble

Lips race Joyride to gamble
Nothing weakens to crumble
Baking a crumb cake its
doable stays together but
things unnamed not like
a marriage

We get blamed joyride
got damaged
We become gullible
What becomes of the broken heart
someone isn't reliable
Lips are not responsible
Leadership has you cornered  
To stumble upon her lips
Rendered steamboat surrender
How he tumbles
Mr. Grey Poupon Mustard seed
He plants her like his
only joyride
In need
We are all Jupiter the moon
joy to the world
All the boys and girls being
taken for joyrides

The Beach boy's video games
Spy lips whose to blame
Phillip screwdriver
But they take a ride
All you could pick a hot buffet
feasting she is still wearing
hot lipstick
Men have their choice of
they're next
Joyride Bride about the money
Wall-Street cars of hobbies
investing
Yeah right?
Lips take a joyride can we all please take a moment lets decide what we will do.
Is it really up to you for the road always him light that fire trim lips glow joyride fires out you tell the world what it is all about?
Meredith Ann Jan 16
I don't know you anymore
because I still know who you used to be
but when I look back
I don't feel like myself
because you've changed me since
But I don't want the old me back,
I just. want. you.
A selfish enigma
Johnny walker Nov 2018
The 1960s loved the cars and motorcycles built to last I dought very much we'll have cars from today lasting to be classics wonderful
all the music exciting always breaking new ground colourful fashions girls in their mini skirts
so pretty to see, made
I want to be alive, youth
was having Its day and
living life to the full I thought this would
never end, the hippies
had It right, peace and
love, It so sad we now
have to live In a world
that didn't take the
time to
listen
Thought of the sixty's new ground making music exciting fashions pretty girls In mini skirts made one want to be alive
Muffled whispers
in the dead of night
I'm far out me mind
He's crystal clear
in my sight
Drops of
vermillion
blood
pour
as we
become nocturnal
once more
our twisted fate
is still quite
vernal
clear as
night
we are
written
in the stars
headlights
illuminate
us
from
passing
cars
the world has shifted its weight again
its standing on utterly new legs
with eyes like bridges you turn to fishing
i sweep the carpets and close the windows
another case of barnyard blasphemy
from the wilderness we return
on rafts made from caskets and firewood
to flag the stars and wage war on all the cars
that are left abandoned on our highways
FIRST DAY

1.
Who wanted me
to go to Chicago
on January 6th?
I did!

The night before,
20 below zero
Fahrenheit
with the wind chill;
as the blizzard of 99
lay in mountains
of blackening snow.

I packed two coats,
two suits,
three sweaters,
multiple sets of long johns
and heavy white socks
for a two-day stay.

I left from Newark.
**** the denseness,
it confounds!

The 2nd City to whom?
2nd ain’t bad.
It’s pretty good.
If you consider
Peking and Prague,
Tokyo and Togo,
Manchester and Moscow,
Port Au Prince and Paris,
Athens and Amsterdam,
Buenos Aries and Johannesburg;
that’s pretty good.

What’s going on here today?
It’s friggin frozen.
To the bone!

But Chi Town is still cool.
Buddy Guy’s is open.
Bartenders mixing drinks,
cabbies jamming on their breaks,
honey dew waitresses serving sugar,
buildings swerving,
fire tongued preachers are preaching
and the farmers are measuring the moon.

The lake,
unlike Ontario
is in the midst of freezing.
Bones of ice
threaten to gel
into a solid mass
over the expanse
of the Michigan Lake.
If this keeps up,
you can walk
clear to Toronto
on a silver carpet.

Along the shore
the ice is permanent.
It’s the first big frost
of winter
after a long
Indian Summer.

Thank God
I caught a cab.
Outside I hear
The Hawk
nippin hard.
It’ll get your ear,
finger or toe.
Bite you on the nose too
if you ain’t careful.

Thank God,
I’m not walking
the Wabash tonight;
but if you do cover up,
wear layers.

Chicago,
could this be
Sandburg’s City?

I’m overwhelmed
and this is my tenth time here.

It’s almost better,
sometimes it is better,
a lot of times it is better
and denser then New York.

Ask any Bull’s fan.
I’m a Knickerbocker.
Yes Nueva York,
a city that has placed last
in the standings
for many years.
Except the last two.
Yanks are # 1!

But Chicago
is a dynasty,
as big as
Sammy Sosa’s heart,
rich and wide
as Michael Jordan’s grin.

Middle of a country,
center of a continent,
smack dab in the mean
of a hemisphere,
vortex to a world,
Chicago!

Kansas City,
Nashville,
St. Louis,
Detroit,
Cleveland,
Pittsburgh,
Denver,
New Orleans,
Dallas,
Cairo,
Singapore,
Auckland,
Baghdad,
Mexico City
and Montreal
salute her.



2.
Cities,
A collection of vanities?
Engineered complex utilitarianism?
The need for community a social necessity?
Ego one with the mass?
Civilization’s latest *******?
Chicago is more then that.

Jefferson’s yeoman farmer
is long gone
but this capitol
of the Great Plains
is still democratic.

The citizen’s of this city
would vote daily,
if they could.

Chicago,
Sandburg’s Chicago,
Could it be?

The namesake river
segments the city,
canals of commerce,
all perpendicular,
is rife throughout,
still guiding barges
to the Mississippi
and St. Laurence.

Now also
tourist attractions
for a cafe society.

Chicago is really jazzy,
swanky clubs,
big steaks,
juices and drinks.

You get the best
coffee from Seattle
and the finest teas
from China.

Great restaurants
serve liquid jazz
al la carte.

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they serve is Jazz
Rock me steady
Keep the beat
Keep it flowin
Feel the heat!

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they is, is Jazz
Fast cars will take ya
To the show
Round bout midnight
Where’d the time go?

Flows into the Mississippi,
the mother of America’s rivers,
an empires aorta.

Great Lakes wonder of water.
Niagara Falls
still her heart gushes forth.

Buffalo connected to this holy heart.
Finger Lakes and Adirondacks
are part of this watershed,
all the way down to the
Delaware and Chesapeake.

Sandburg’s Chicago?
Oh my my,
the wonder of him.
Who captured the imagination
of the wonders of rivers.

Down stream other holy cities
from the Mississippi delta
all mapped by him.

Its mouth our Dixie Trumpet
guarded by righteous Cajun brethren.

Midwest?
Midwest from where?
It’s north of Caracas and Los Angeles,
east of Fairbanks,
west of Dublin
and south of not much.

Him,
who spoke of honest men
and loving women.
Working men and mothers
bearing citizens to build a nation.
The New World’s
precocious adolescent
caught in a stream
of endless and exciting change,
much pain and sacrifice,
dedication and loss,
pride and tribulations.

From him we know
all the people’s faces.
All their stories are told.
Never defeating the
idea of Chicago.

Sandburg had the courage to say
what was in the heart of the people, who:

Defeated the Indians,
Mapped the terrain,
Aided slavers,
Fought a terrible civil war,
Hoisted the barges,
Grew the food,
Whacked the wheat,
Sang the songs,
Fought many wars of conquest,
Cleared the land,
Erected the bridges,
Trapped the game,
Netted the fish,
Mined the coal,
Forged the steel,
Laid the tracks,
Fired the tenders,
Cut the stone,
Mixed the mortar,
Plumbed the line,
And laid the bricks
Of this nation of cities!

Pardon the Marlboro Man shtick.
It’s a poor expostulation of
crass commercial symbolism.

Like I said, I’m a
Devil Fan from Jersey
and Madison Avenue
has done its work on me.

It’s a strange alchemy
that changes
a proud Nation of Blackhawks
into a merchandising bonanza
of hometown hockey shirts,
making the native seem alien,
and the interloper at home chillin out,
warming his feet atop a block of ice,
guzzling Old Style
with clicker in hand.

Give him his beer
and other diversions.
If he bowls with his buddy’s
on Tuesday night
I hope he bowls
a perfect game.

He’s earned it.
He works hard.
Hard work and faith
built this city.

And it’s not just the faith
that fills the cities
thousand churches,
temples and
mosques on the Sabbath.

3.
There is faith in everything in Chicago!

An alcoholic broker named Bill
lives the Twelve Steps
to banish fear and loathing
for one more day.
Bill believes in sobriety.

A tug captain named Moe
waits for the spring thaw
so he can get the barges up to Duluth.
Moe believes in the seasons.

A farmer named Tom
hopes he has reaped the last
of many bitter harvests.
Tom believes in a new start.

A homeless man named Earl
wills himself a cot and a hot
at the local shelter.
Earl believes in deliverance.

A Pullman porter
named George
works overtime
to get his first born
through medical school.
George believes in opportunity.

A folk singer named Woody
sings about his
countrymen inheritance
and implores them to take it.
Woody believes in people.

A Wobbly named Joe
organizes fellow steelworkers
to fight for a workers paradise
here on earth.
Joe believes in ideals.

A bookkeeper named Edith
is certain she’ll see the Cubs
win the World Series
in her lifetime.
Edith believes in miracles.

An electrician named ****
saves money
to bring his family over from Gdansk.
**** believes in America.

A banker named Leah
knows Ditka will return
and lead the Bears
to another Super Bowl.
Leah believes in nostalgia.

A cantor named Samuel
prays for another 20 years
so he can properly train
his Temple’s replacement.

Samuel believes in tradition.
A high school girl named Sally
refuses to get an abortion.
She knows she carries
something special within her.
Sally believes in life.

A city worker named Mazie
ceaselessly prays
for her incarcerated son
doing 10 years at Cook.
Mazie believes in redemption.

A jazzer named Bix
helps to invent a new art form
out of the mist.
Bix believes in creativity.

An architect named Frank
restores the Rookery.
Frank believes in space.

A soldier named Ike
fights wars for democracy.
Ike believes in peace.

A Rabbi named Jesse
sermonizes on Moses.
Jesse believes in liberation.

Somewhere in Chicago
a kid still believes in Shoeless Joe.
The kid believes in
the integrity of the game.

An Imam named Louis
is busy building a nation
within a nation.
Louis believes in
self-determination.

A teacher named Heidi
gives all she has to her students.
She has great expectations for them all.
Heidi believes in the future.

4.
Does Chicago have a future?

This city,
full of cowboys
and wildcatters
is predicated
on a future!

Bang, bang
Shoot em up
Stake the claim
It’s your terrain
Drill the hole
Strike it rich
Top it off
You’re the boss
Take a chance
Watch it wane
Try again
Heavenly gains

Chicago
city of futures
is a Holy Mecca
to all day traders.

Their skin is gray,
hair disheveled,
loud ties and
funny coats,
thumb through
slips of paper
held by nail
chewed hands.
Selling promises
with no derivative value
for out of the money calls
and in the money puts.
Strike is not a labor action
in this city of unionists,
but a speculators mark,
a capitalist wish,
a hedgers bet,
a public debt
and a farmers
fair return.

Indexes for everything.
Quantitative models
that could burst a kazoo.

You know the measure
of everything in Chicago.
But is it truly objective?
Have mathematics banished
subjective intentions,
routing it in fair practice
of market efficiencies,
a kind of scientific absolution?

I heard that there
is a dispute brewing
over the amount of snowfall
that fell on the 1st.

The mayor’s office,
using the official city ruler
measured 22”
of snow on the ground.

The National Weather Service
says it cannot detect more
then 17” of snow.

The mayor thinks
he’ll catch less heat
for the trains that don’t run
the buses that don’t arrive
and the schools that stand empty
with the addition of 5”.

The analysts say
it’s all about capturing liquidity.

Liquidity,
can you place a great lake
into an eyedropper?

Its 20 below
and all liquid things
are solid masses
or a gooey viscosity at best.

Water is frozen everywhere.
But Chi town is still liquid,
flowing faster
then the digital blips
flashing on the walls
of the CBOT.

Dreams
are never frozen in Chicago.
The exchanges trade
without missing a beat.

Trading wet dreams,
the crystallized vapor
of an IPO
pledging a billion points
of Internet access
or raiding the public treasuries
of a central bank’s
huge stores of gold
with currency swaps.

Using the tools
of butterfly spreads
and candlesticks
to achieve the goal.

Short the Russell
or buy the Dow,
go long the
CAC and DAX.
Are you trading in euro’s?
You better be
or soon will.
I know
you’re Chicago,
you’ll trade anything.
WEBS,
Spiders,
and Leaps
are traded here,
along with sweet crude,
North Sea Brent,
plywood and T-Bill futures;
and most importantly
the commodities,
the loam
that formed this city
of broad shoulders.

What about our wheat?
Still whacking and
breadbasket to the world.

Oil,
an important fossil fuel
denominated in
good ole greenbacks.

Porkbellies,
not just hogwash
on the Wabash,
but bacon, eggs
and flapjacks
are on the menu
of every diner in Jersey
as the “All American.”

Cotton,
our contribution
to the Golden Triangle,
once the global currency
used to enrich a
gentlemen class
of cultured
southern slavers,
now Tommy Hilfiger’s
preferred fabric.

I think he sends it
to Bangkok where
child slaves
spin it into
gold lame'.

Sorghum,
I think its hardy.

Soybeans,
the new age substitute
for hamburger
goes great with tofu lasagna.

Corn,
ADM creates ethanol,
they want us to drive cleaner cars.

Cattle,
once driven into this city’s
bloodhouses for slaughter,
now ground into
a billion Big Macs
every year.

When does a seed
become a commodity?
When does a commodity
become a future?
When does a future expire?

You can find the answers
to these questions in Chicago
and find a fortune in a hole in the floor.

Look down into the pits.
Hear the screams of anguish
and profitable delights.

Frenzied men
swarming like a mass
of epileptic ants
atop the worlds largest sugar cube
auger the worlds free markets.

The scene is
more chaotic then
100 Haymarket Square Riots
multiplied by 100
1968 Democratic Conventions.

Amidst inverted anthills,
they scurry forth and to
in distinguished
black and red coats.

Fighting each other
as counterparties
to a life and death transaction.

This is an efficient market
that crosses the globe.

Oil from the Sultan of Brunei,
Yen from the land of Hitachi,
Long Bonds from the Fed,
nickel from Quebec,
platinum and palladium
from Siberia,
FTSE’s from London
and crewel cane from Havana
circle these pits.

Tijuana,
Shanghai
and Istanbul's
best traders
are only half as good
as the average trader in Chicago.

Chicago,
this hog butcher to the world,
specializes in packaging and distribution.

Men in blood soaked smocks,
still count the heads
entering the gates of the city.

Their handiwork
is sent out on barges
and rail lines as frozen packages
of futures
waiting for delivery
to an anonymous counterparty
half a world away.

This nation’s hub
has grown into the
premier purveyor
to the world;
along all the rivers,
highways,
railways
and estuaries
it’s tentacles reach.

5.
Sandburg’s Chicago,
is a city of the world’s people.

Many striver rows compose
its many neighborhoods.

Nordic stoicism,
Eastern European orthodoxy
and Afro-American
calypso vibrations
are three of many cords
strumming the strings
of Chicago.

Sandburg’s Chicago,
if you wrote forever
you would only scratch its surface.

People wait for trains
to enter the city from O’Hare.
Frozen tears
lock their eyes
onto distant skyscrapers,
solid chunks
of snot blocks their nose
and green icicles of slime
crust mustaches.
They fight to breathe.

Sandburg’s Chicago
is The Land of Lincoln,
Savior of the Union,
protector of the Republic.
Sent armies
of sons and daughters,
barges, boxcars,
gunboats, foodstuffs,
cannon and shot
to raze the south
and stamp out succession.

Old Abe’s biography
are still unknown volumes to me.
I must see and read the great words.
You can never learn enough;
but I’ve been to Washington
and seen the man’s memorial.
The Free World’s 8th wonder,
guarded by General Grant,
who still keeps an eye on Richmond
and a hand on his sword.

Through this American winter
Abe ponders.
The vista he surveys is dire and tragic.

Our sitting President
impeached
for lying about a *******.

Party partisans
in the senate are sworn and seated.
Our Chief Justice,
adorned with golden bars
will adjudicate the proceedings.
It is the perfect counterpoint
to an ageless Abe thinking
with malice toward none
and charity towards all,
will heal the wounds
of the nation.

Abe our granite angel,
Chicago goes on,
The Union is strong!


SECOND DAY

1.
Out my window
the sun has risen.

According to
the local forecast
its minus 9
going up to
6 today.

The lake,
a golden pillow of clouds
is frozen in time.

I marvel
at the ancients ones
resourcefulness
and how
they mastered
these extreme elements.

Past, present and future
has no meaning
in the Citadel
of the Prairie today.

I set my watch
to Central Standard Time.

Stepping into
the hotel lobby
the concierge
with oil smooth hair,
perfect tie
and English lilt
impeccably asks,
“Do you know where you are going Sir?
Can I give you a map?”

He hands me one of Chicago.
I see he recently had his nails done.
He paints a green line
along Whacker Drive and says,
“turn on Jackson, LaSalle, Wabash or Madison
and you’ll get to where you want to go.”
A walk of 14 or 15 blocks from Streeterville-
(I start at The Chicago White House.
They call it that because Hillary Rodham
stays here when she’s in town.
Its’ also alleged that Stedman
eats his breakfast here
but Opra
has never been seen
on the premises.
I wonder how I gained entry
into this place of elite’s?)
-down into the center of The Loop.

Stepping out of the hotel,
The Doorman
sporting the epaulets of a colonel
on his corporate winter coat
and furry Cossack hat
swaddling his round black face
accosts me.

The skin of his face
is flaking from
the subzero windburn.

He asks me
with a gapped toothy grin,
“Can I get you a cab?”
“No I think I’ll walk,” I answer.
“Good woolen hat,
thick gloves you should be alright.”
He winks and lets me pass.

I step outside.
The Windy City
flings stabbing cold spears
flying on wings of 30-mph gusts.
My outside hardens.
I can feel the freeze
deepen
into my internalness.
I can’t be sure
but inside
my heart still feels warm.
For how long
I cannot say.

I commence
my walk
among the spires
of this great city,
the vertical leaps
that anchor the great lake,
holding its place
against the historic
frigid assault.

The buildings’ sway,
modulating to the blows
of natures wicked blasts.

It’s a hard imposition
on a city and its people.

The gloves,
skullcap,
long underwear,
sweater,
jacket
and overcoat
not enough
to keep the cold
from penetrating
the person.

Like discerning
the layers of this city,
even many layers,
still not enough
to understand
the depth of meaning
of the heart
of this heartland city.

Sandburg knew the city well.
Set amidst groves of suburbs
that extend outward in every direction.
Concentric circles
surround the city.
After the burbs come farms,
Great Plains, and mountains.
Appalachians and Rockies
are but mere molehills
in the city’s back yard.
It’s terra firma
stops only at the sea.
Pt. Barrow to the Horn,
many capes extended.

On the periphery
its appendages,
its extremities,
its outward extremes.
All connected by the idea,
blown by the incessant wind
of this great nation.
The Windy City’s message
is sent to the world’s four corners.
It is a message of power.
English the worlds
common language
is spoken here,
along with Ebonics,
Espanol,
Mandarin,
Czech,
Russian,
Korean,
Arabic,
Hindi­,
German,
French,
electronics,
steel,
cars,
cartoons,
rap,
sports­,
movies,
capital,
wheat
and more.

Always more.
Much much more
in Chicago.

2.
Sandburg
spoke all the dialects.

He heard them all,
he understood
with great precision
to the finest tolerances
of a lathe workers micrometer.

Sandburg understood
what it meant to laugh
and be happy.

He understood
the working mans day,
the learned treatises
of university chairs,
the endless tomes
of the city’s
great libraries,
the lost languages
of the ancient ones,
the secret codes
of abstract art,
the impact of architecture,
the street dialects and idioms
of everymans expression of life.

All fighting for life,
trying to build a life,
a new life
in this modern world.

Walking across
the Michigan Avenue Bridge
I see the Wrigley Building
is neatly carved,
catty cornered on the plaza.

I wonder if Old Man Wrigley
watched his barges
loaded with spearmint
and double-mint
move out onto the lake
from one of those Gothic windows
perched high above the street.

Would he open a window
and shout to the men below
to quit slaking and work harder
or would he
between the snapping sound
he made with his mouth
full of his chewing gum
offer them tickets
to a ballgame at Wrigley Field
that afternoon?

Would the men below
be able to understand
the man communing
from such a great height?

I listen to a man
and woman conversing.
They are one step behind me
as we meander along Wacker Drive.

"You are in Chicago now.”
The man states with profundity.
“If I let you go
you will soon find your level
in this city.
Do you know what I mean?”

No I don’t.
I think to myself.
What level are you I wonder?
Are you perched atop
the transmission spire
of the Hancock Tower?

I wouldn’t think so
or your ears would melt
from the windburn.

I’m thinking.
Is she a kept woman?
She is majestically clothed
in fur hat and coat.
In animal pelts
not trapped like her,
but slaughtered
from farms
I’m sure.

What level
is he speaking of?

Many levels
are evident in this city;
many layers of cobbled stone,
Pennsylvania iron,
Hoosier Granite
and vertical drops.

I wonder
if I detect
condensation
in his voice?

What is
his intention?
Is it a warning
of a broken affair?
A pending pink slip?
Advise to an addict
refusing to adhere
to a recovery regimen?

What is his level anyway?
Is he so high and mighty,
Higher and mightier
then this great city
which we are all a part of,
which we all helped to build,
which we all need
in order to keep this nation
the thriving democratic
empire it is?

This seditious talk!

3.
The Loop’s El
still courses through
the main thoroughfares of the city.

People are transported
above the din of the street,
looking down
on the common pedestrians
like me.

Super CEO’s
populating the upper floors
of Romanesque,
Greek Revivalist,
New Bauhaus,
Art Deco
and Post Nouveau
Neo-Modern
Avant-Garde towers
are too far up
to see me
shivering on the street.

The cars, busses,
trains and trucks
are all covered
with the film
of rock salt.

Salt covers
my bootless feet
and smudges
my cloths as well.

The salt,
the primal element
of the earth
covers everything
in Chicago.

It is the true level
of this city.

The layer
beneath
all layers,
on which
everything
rests,
is built,
grows,
thrives
then dies.
To be
returned again
to the lower
layers
where it can
take root
again
and grow
out onto
the great plains.

Splashing
the nation,
anointing
its people
with its
blessing.

A blessing,
Chicago?

All rivers
come here.

All things
found its way here
through the canals
and back bays
of the world’s
greatest lakes.

All roads,
rails and
air routes
begin and
end here.

Mrs. O’Leary’s cow
got a *** rap.
It did not start the fire,
we did.

We lit the torch
that flamed
the city to cinders.
From a pile of ash
Chicago rose again.

Forever Chicago!
Forever the lamp
that burns bright
on a Great Lake’s
western shore!

Chicago
the beacon
sends the
message to the world
with its windy blasts,
on chugging barges,
clapping trains,
flying tandems,
T1 circuits
and roaring jets.

Sandburg knew
a Chicago
I will never know.

He knew
the rhythm of life
the people walked to.
The tools they used,
the dreams they dreamed
the songs they sang,
the things they built,
the things they loved,
the pains that hurt,
the motives that grew,
the actions that destroyed
the prayers they prayed,
the food they ate
their moments of death.

Sandburg knew
the layers of the city
to the depths
and windy heights
I cannot fathom.

The Blues
came to this city,
on the wing
of a chirping bird,
on the taps
of a rickety train,
on the blast
of an angry sax
rushing on the wind,
on the Westend blitz
of Pop's brash coronet,
on the tink of
a twinkling piano
on a paddle-wheel boat
and on the strings
of a lonely man’s guitar.

Walk into the clubs,
tenements,
row houses,
speakeasies
and you’ll hear the Blues
whispered like
a quiet prayer.

Tidewater Blues
from Virginia,
Delta Blues
from the lower
Mississippi,
Boogie Woogie
from Appalachia,
Texas Blues
from some Lone Star,
Big Band Blues
from Kansas City,
Blues from
Beal Street,
Jelly Roll’s Blues
from the Latin Quarter.

**** even Chicago
got its own brand
of Blues.

Its all here.
It ended up here
and was sent away
on the winds of westerly blows
to the ear of an eager world
on strong jet streams
of simple melodies
and hard truths.

A broad
shouldered woman,
a single mother stands
on the street
with three crying babes.
Their cloths
are covered
in salt.
She pleads
for a break,
praying
for a new start.
Poor and
under-clothed
against the torrent
of frigid weather
she begs for help.
Her blond hair
and ****** features
suggests her
Scandinavian heritage.
I wonder if
she is related to Sandburg
as I walk past
her on the street.
Her feet
are bleeding
through her
canvass sneakers.
Her babes mouths
are zipped shut
with frozen drivel
and mucous.

The Blues live
on in Chicago.

The Blues
will forever live in her.
As I turn the corner
to walk the Miracle Mile
I see her engulfed
in a funnel cloud of salt,
snow and bits
of white paper,
swirling around her
and her children
in an angry
unforgiving
maelstrom.

The family
begins to
dissolve
like a snail
sprinkled with salt;
and a mother
and her children
just disappear
into the pavement
at the corner
of Dearborn,
in Chicago.

Music:

Robert Johnson
Sweet Home Chicago


jbm
Chicago
1/7/99
Added today to commemorate the birthday of Carl Sandburg
Jordan Hudson Dec 2018
Low as can go, so low to the ground
Ace this ride at the show in the town
Windows up, windows down
Depends on who is around
Pass by quickly, make some cash
While they pass while I crash
They roll off the curbside
I roll off by exit signs
Empty tank while they keep going
Bumps and holes, my stance keeps mewing
Hitting every one that I see
Cringing every time its too clean
Making a living and making stacks
Living at home and living at the track
I can go and yes I am back
You all gonna see what you lack
Sitting at the back side you all gonna see
What I can do and what I have for me
Place down at the table, make the bet
I got this and I ain't gonna let
All you dominate and take the crown
I gonna take this town and take down
The throne while you sit aside
I gonna sit down ain't gonna let this slide
Watch me as I take over this night
Watch ahead at the lit up tail lights
You are sad and trash I can drive
Can't go no where don't you lie
Take the backseat while I drive
Enjoy this sweet and fast ride
The others slowly follow behind
I just watch my mirrors all the time
Yeah, yeah
They all gonna drift and turn
What they gonna see is my flames burn
Listen to that bass and that exhaust
The sounds of the others getting lost
Way back there I'm up here
Where did they go can they not steer
They cannot even race
They just can't keep up with my pace
While I get ahead they behind
I'm up here can they find
Flash the lights, drive away
Get up there and we can stay
Up in first up in class
While they trailing behind my
We can reach the dot
On the map we have got
The power and the skill now
We gonna reach that town
We made it to other side
We made it and we didn't die
They all gonna see exactly why
We can make it they can't deny
Watch as we drive by all the Midwestern cows
Listen as I play this beat on the cloud
Gun it we don't time click click kapow
I love this one, got stance?
Meteo Jan 2018
in winter the trees forget
how to be green

and all the cars
the same colour
as the road

i am driving you home
springtime is around the corner
exist Sep 2018
no two cars are the same on a highway
they may be the same make or model
but they may not have the same engines
that operate the same
or seen the same stretch of roads
and some cars just aren’t meant for certain terrains
so why do we treat other humans any differently?
long walk thoughts
Holly M Jul 2018
empty is not the right word.
what is the word for
not quite empty but not quite full?
there is a glass on the table-
it is not half-empty,
but it is not half-full.
it is just a glass of water.
i am just a glass of water:
not empty, not full;
not happy, not sad-
not anything.
not anything at all.

the clear blue nothingness
reminds me of the fact.
it’s dotted with cotton candy clouds.
i wonder if they are as sweet.
my tongue salivates at the thought.
it is like a land of dreams
without sorrow or pain
yet i am here,
floating lightly
though i feel like a paperweight,
weighed down by the lump in my throat.

it’s hard to remember
what home looks like.
i can’t see in terms of
“where i belong,”
i only see in terms of
“the trees are like broccoli sprouts-” and
“the cars look like hotwheels-” and
“every single one has a person in it, and
they all have their own journeys, and
i am here.”
i don’t think they know how beautiful it is.
i didn’t.

home to me now is a backpack
a couple books
and a trinket from an old friend.
they are the only ones like me:
strangers in a strange land.
i’d like to find my way back someday-
if only i knew the way.
laura Oct 2018
Piano and guitar playing light songs
soft tape, fresh rain, streets oblique
christmas lights on her walls like she
lives in a dorm, eucalyptus smelling
fresco paintings with 666s on them
bring on the full Fall, dim cars
outside and their alarms or engines
in the pause of our sleepy conversations
we go in deep when we’re satisfied with
the noise we’ve made
Tell me I'm not this. The blue began to flood
inside a room once painted black. Tell me I don't
see this. The orb of morning peering its start right to
my eyelids that can't even close. Tell me I don't hear
this. Birds chirping for sunrise, playing lightly as my
lullaby. Tell me I'm dreaming. My leg still twitches,
seven in the morning, because I'm afraid I'll lose myself
before dawn. Shedding emotion in fast waves of flight,
tell me I didn't run through time, making stars out
of daylight. Orange in the sky, and not from shy
headlights in insomniac cars. Yellow, making its fellow
opening for my uncomforted sleep, not a nightlight like before,
no. Tell me I'm not this.
All feedback is welcome
Rob Rutledge Jan 2016
She gazed out long and far,
Past half closed curtains  
And dozing, docile cars.
Witness to a world double glazed
Dampened by a passing rain.
Sound drowned still by fragile,
Stained glass pane.

Skies lay grey, like every other day,
Shrubs shrug and trees sadly sway.
She feels for the trees,
(And to an extent the shrub)
They're not so different from you or I.
We all plant roots, grow, love?

Thoughts disturbed by a startled dove,
Flew the coup, done, had enough,
Rose as Icarus toward the sun.
Basked in light of new found freedom.

Never heard the hunters gun.
laura Oct 2018
sitting in your corvette
bass boosted songs
and friday sunlight reflecting
off crisp puddles from yesterday
you hit the gas
and my hair goes straight
to the roof
feels like i’m trapped in
a fish bowl, sports cars
easy to get in
but impossible to get out
maybe that’s your plan
Ilion gray Sep 2018
I remember

The way it was.

One June afternoon
everything in the universe broke.

I was walking down Bushwick ave.
into the hungry concrete;
Below
a Brooklyn Bound L train
slicing through
Earth;

myriads of strident rushing
town cars drifting
Over the streets
Of the patchwork
City;

I turned left down our old block
Madison ave.
nothing could prepare me
for the silent
pulseless
minutes that suffocate
everything breathing

There would be no sound
in the apartment tonight.

No other souls
wrapped in wanting skin.
In my life,
I loved you savagely...

                                        tonight
I'm going to be alone

the concrete has expanded since you left,

The blocks are longer than last summer;

The hours just pass.

what it took to get to the front door
From the corner
in fear of entering our house
After I've lost you.
I come home
where all these memories are stains;

Black streaks left by
Murdered cigarettes.

******* trash bags
full of empty Scotch whiskey bottles;
filled

With Guts,
Blood teeth and pounds of skin
miles of empty dry veins;
Like a river
that God fell into,
these waves of days
Rage

Sometimes I wish
I'd never felt the Sun;
its fingers burning my skin.

I will burn
from every memory of you.

The total emptiness of this space
where love was put to rest;

The emptiness just stares.

Stealing seconds from shallow pockets of years,
Stealing years,

From this shallow pocket

Of life
The sun never shines
in downtown
Theres no merry go round
Nor the sweetest sound
in downtown .
There's no pleasant air
And nobody cares
lifes so unfair
  in downtown.
Such an unwelcoming sight
When your out  at night
Walking the streets brings no delight
Your caught in a trap and can't take to flight
in downtown.
There are no bars or  sound of cars
All you have are many scars
  in downtown .
Now this is the news
That can help you through
There is a way out of downtown
For there's not such a place  
you need not fear nor dread
Its just those thoughts inside your head.
If we are honist with ourselves I feel we all have
been in that town sometime or another if not often.
Summer days and heatwaves
Sweat pouring down our skin
Working hard no time to rest
From the time the day begins.

Bailing hay without a shade
Not a single cloud insight
Gathering all the barely corn
We work until the night.

we have a little hideaway
A place down in the vale
Its where we drink some scrumpy
Along with beer and ale.

We while away  an hour or more
Depending on how we feel
We rest and take it easy
No sound from the tractors wheel.

Now tomorrow is another day
Our work load it will keep
We may be striming hedge grows
Or we may be shearing sheep.

But we really are not bothered
We've been farmers far too long
We carry out our dutys
And sometimes with a song.

Our lives are hard but simple
We are living the country life
Away from the city and the fumes
From cars and such alike.

You see we have this hideaway
A little place down in the vale
So come along and join us
At the end of a farmers day
Feeling the affects of the British heatwave
Made me feel just how  it must  be for the farmers with all the heat.
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