by B. E. Stock
For five years they have been trying to demolish
This building, which was made in contemplation
Of centuries of use. The most advanced methods
Of the millennium are brought in, carefully skirting
The surrounding business and the old Woolworth
(Now a shrine too holy to be seen by tourists).
They will succeed, they will succeed,
Another ten year tent will be erected,
But how I love the old thing’s resistance!
It will exact the maximum penalty
From these barbarians, whose greed destroyed
The fine institutions that were there,
Little by little eating away the wood phone booths,
The reasonable diner, the lifelong business suit,
The portly demeanor, the courtesy,
The polished metal, the real gold.
Behind it the clerks sweated in airless cubicles,
And the boss feared the uberboss, and the paper
Came forth, and messengers were urgent.
But they trusted the floor and the ceiling
And stashed their cash knowing they had
A future, and wanting one, and saluted
A flag that said we all are kings
(Still true but now if you say it
You are embarrassing), and I love
This gaping hole, this ragged fence
A mouth that screams that something
Deeply rooted is being destroyed
Not to be replaced by creatures of worth
From hands that care, hands
That believe in the dream.
Copyright © 2013 by B. E. Stock.