Monday, March 23, 2020


Unnaturally stunted and
silent city—what can I say?
Where can I go? All of your shops
and offices are closed, and the
noisy nonchalant spirit of your millions
has been frozen, distilled down
to a hard bullion of wearied tenacity.
Like a few others, I still find myself
out this morning amid your repeating
patches of snow, grass, concrete,
and shadow—I have been listening
for the music of my own voice;
but without the din, I don't expect
to find it. It felt almost natural:
the impersonal patterns of motion,
the generous friction of this close-
quartered existence, the obnoxious
excitement of your traffic—
the concatenation of car horns
and police sirens, truck belches
and train groans—I'd like all of this
commotion to speak for me
again this morning, the way it
has so often—but it won't, I know it.
So I take a cue from you, inanimate
fortress. I hunker down and make do.
I cash a little hope in for resilience
and try my best own it—for a bit,
I'm going to have to do this alone.