Winter Scene, River West

Winter Scene, River West

Just before midnight on a Thursday,
and Fratney Street is nearly silent.
Two sounds compete for the night:
the crunch of boots on dirty snow
from a woman walking away from you,
and the insistent hum of a street lamp
on the far corner. The snow plows
have completed their appointed rounds,
the pavement has been well-seasoned.
You stand there with your back against
a telephone pole, and watch her shrink
into the distant past until she becomes
just another blessed stranger no longer
in your line of sight. And you shiver.
The temperature is beginning to drop
names. The street lamp is humming
a Dylan tune. And a red light in the
second floor window above an all-night
laundromat across the street goes out,
fading away to a colder shade of black.

Paul Scot August

Published in Bending Light Into Verse II by Jennifer Tomaloff

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