The train departs at dusk from New York
the neon signs begin to bleed their letters
the light goes into buildings
that pass like so much else that I notice
and forget and don't notice and remember
like specific places where litter ends up
and the last patches of snow
and the iron that rusts slowly
while millions of people are in a hurry.
There is no place to rush to or rush from
eternity is everywhere at once
in the instant the nail polish dries
on my mother's fingers
and my father does a card-trick
in front of the mirror
and I try to write on a train
in another country crossing a bridge
over the military green water
of the river to the Bronx and over the freeway
past Swingline Staplers and the Bronx Casket Co.
now that nothing is old or new
now that these words only resemble
the meaning of these words.
2007: The Problem of Anxiety by John Ashbery