Friday, May 16, 2008

The Dead Still Walk

The dead still walk
This city,
I dreamt once that
Children burnt in a fire,
With only their arms for blankets,
Sang in the frozen night
Outside a church
While angels wept down upon them.
92 children howled and screamed
Like dying animals,
Singing for God
To let them in
Back in.

The dead still talk
In this city.
My Dad drove an ambulance
For Thompson Funeral Parlor
At 79th and Ellis
And sometimes the dead
Spoke to him through
The radio
Or called him on the phone
But when he turned
On the TV
They'd only
Stare back
Waving silently
In black and white.

The Irish dead still talk
A lot in this city.
The fog is like cigar smoke
At the foot of the lake,
And Richard J. Daley
Could always see through
The smoke.
Every wink, every nod,
Every smirk
Turned into highways,
Skyscrapers and bridges.
"I'm a kid from the stockyards--
I'll stand with you."
And he did.

Then the Irish
Licked the frosting,
Ate the cake
And sold the

Who built the pyramids?
Mayor Daley built the pyramids.

--Tony Fitzpatrick, Bum Town

No comments: