Haunted Heart

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Broken heart of this
city in a straightjacket edged with gold and railroad tracks
where loneliness is a hedge around a house
and beauty is an English garden.

I have a habit of haunting this place.
When I turn off of gum-and-spit-spotted street
onto coffee-is-all-you-need avenue,
I breathe a sigh of relief
that tastes like an over-priced coffee sipped
over long oak table in a room with a view
of the eroded grace
of those who have a habit of haunting this place.

Yesterday wraps its feet round telephone wires
slides its scales under viaducts
and catches its tail on chainlink.

This city before a city where bones and rivers
still sing under concrete
where the steel slap clap of pigeon wings echoes off glass
where history oxidizes iron in rain
and fear begets exclusion begets difference begets disgust,
begets displacement
begets heartbreak
begets rust.

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