Snapshots from the Brooklyn Vespers/
Somewhere a match is igniting a cigarette
and there is laughter in the flame.
sitting in a doorway, sharing a bottle.
The streets are exhausted.
I will try to tell everything: how words are the only people I know
All the warehouses along West street,
their graffiti and wasted condoms,
cars still clucking in the heat, the whole place
begging to be quiet.
Even the men who work graveyard
at the loading docks are trying not to speak.
that the sight of this world falls onto my hands like hot ash
Every river is a shivering half of the sky,
but this one is a breath of air,
between here and the abandoned
ghost ship of the city.
Where the buildings once were, the darkness
of their shadows.
and it burns a print over my palms, a picture slowly developing
The flash of sirens works slow minuets
around the bedroom walls.
A neighbor is taking special care
not to wake
her baby. Her footsteps a certain song,
one of secrecy.
or a map drawn so long ago the city is forgotten, an old pain.
BY MATTHEW ZINGG
Matthew Zingg's work appears in or is forthcoming from Cider Press Review, The Madison Review, Blackbird, The Awl, Low Log, The Rumpus, and Opium Magazine. He currently resides in Brooklyn and is a founding member of the 1441 collective.