Tuesday, and after: 2005, 343

Tuesday, and after: 2005

       9/13/01 200 firefighters dead. 200.

343, actually, if exact numbers
mean anything anymore.

They didn’t, when I finally went
       to see the hole.

If I didn’t know,
if the video did not loop over and over,
it would be just another development
fallen through, a hole
       dug and fenced and left—
       in Philly, we always have at least several—
       if I didn’t know
       if I couldn’t squint my eyes
       just a bit
       and see the televised images, a bitter mask
       over this sunny June day.

Along the river, a woman patiently escorts
       a dog so old and ill she can barely walk on her own,
       which could have been me
last year
       half-carrying my most beloved old girl,
       the weight of the
immanent loss
       far heavier than the dog herself.

the city rising
taking itself to work
       on a beautiful fall morning.

the city ever since
       every day.


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