Monday, October 19, 2009

Walking Away from Gomorrah

Walking Away from Gomorrah

Walking away from Gomorrah
you sense crack lines under your feet
the boll weevils in your cotton dreams
have transformed themselves
into proper citizens
who greet you at the outskirts
of strange cities.

Without compass or job prospects
you've given up everything,
the remnants of your life
are contained in an alligator suitcase
and all you really want now
is a cup of coffee-
the hard won serenity
of a soldier come home from a war
of barbed chalky skies, trench fevers.
Atlanta itself is a city
that rose from ashes
a patina of throbbing life,
Chattahoochie clear waters
now swirl inside you.

In an underground cafe,
a stranger exclaims the news:
Gomorrah has fallen!
You do not reveal
that you helped to engineer its fall
how the fire came so close
with some part of you
still burning.


Kyle Hemmings lives north of the Mason-Dixon Line in what is called New Jersey. He skateboards near Branch Brook Park, falls, and sometimes doesn't get up.