DAILY PHOTO: Garfield Park

Taken on August 16, 2018 in Chicago.

Fun Fact: This park was to be called Central Park until President James Garfield was assassinated. (Not so fun a fact for Garfield, but he did get a park named after him. Not the most illustrious of parks, but then again he wasn’t the most illustrious of Presidents. Ironically, Garfield Park has a very nice sculpture of Lincoln, a much more highly lauded President with a vastly more impressive Chicago Park.

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POEM: Revolving Exile

He was an exile.
Shoved through a turnstile.
Kicked to the burn pile.



One day he walked back.
Followed the train track.
He’d no need for hijack.



Then, sitting on a park bench.
Life threw him a monkey wrench.
And he couldn’t entrench



So he got caught by the eddy.
When he wasn’t ready.
“Not again!” said he.



As he swung around again.

DAILY PHOTO: Museum of Science and Industry, The Side Less Seen

Taken on August 14, 2018 at the Museum of Science and Industry

DAILY PHOTO: Bridge in a Japanese Garden

Taken on August 15, 2018 in The Garden of the Phoenix in Jackson Park, Chicago.

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POEM: Lunatic in the Street

i saw a lunatic pacing at the edge of the street

a man overdressed in the way of those who have no place to hang a hat and an abiding fear that anything left out of sight will vanish — no matter how tattered, malodorous, and undesirable an object of theft said item may be

as he paced, his soliloquy never ceased:

“i’ve been down there; i followed it all the way down to the bottom.

“i saw what resides in the bankrupt bowels of this magnificent megalopolis.

“i looked in its burning eyes, and it would have killed me if it’d thought me worthy.

“i won’t flattery myself to think it took pity on me. no. it just didn’t find me worth its effort.

“it’s waiting. you’ll see. you’ll all see. someday it’s gonna bust its way up here.

“that’ll be our judgement day. could be tomorrow. could be in a million years…”

my first thought was that the man was insane and needed medication

my second thought was that any disaster that brings humanity to its knees will be heralded by a disheveled person ranting about an incomprehensible threat

i did the only thing i could do. i played the odds, figuring that since there are far more lunatics than humanity-devouring disasters; i went about my day as usual

POEM: Shades of Silence

there’re a thousand shades of silence
in this city’s wee morning hours
when all the sound could be drowned out
by the faintest of spring showers

 

each silence can be interpreted
by a person of some expertise
the cop’s silence is a din of dread
that can fell one to his knees

 

hush to the optimist tells him that
among millions, no one is dying
no sirens tells the pessimist
that silence is sometimes lying

 

silence tells the worrying parent
that they’ve forgotten to breathe
it tells the strung-out junkie
that the world has ceased to be

POEM: a trio of fragments

harbor, studded with ships

ships made islands by heavy anchors

immune to the relentless undulation of the sea

 

***

tawdry neon red

pulsing in a puddle

the words unreflected

but the meaning is clear

 

***

gleaming brass caps

top stone buildings

stout, imposing

a Japanese might say Fudōshin

[– the imperturbable]

DAILY PHOTO: Views from McCormick Bridgehouse

Taken on August 12, 2018 from The Chicago River Museum.

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