We, pedestrians, gaze with morbid fascination at the ripped-open streets, sewers and catacombs exposed, burst pipes and city sinews stitched back together. A place like this was built on mass casualties. Each day we walk right above thousands, their fingertips scratching towards the soles of our shoes. Kobayashi Issa wrote: In this world we walk on the roof of hell, gazing at flowers. The roof party is bound to end at some point and we’ll descend as well. Maybe not to hell, but unlikely to ever be unearthed. Yesterday i made rice and black beans for dinner, added spices, sat by the window to finish a book. I’m anyone, stretching back hundreds of years. We, echoes, buy flowers for ghosts the last people with big dreams. No matter where they rest they reach up—remind us who we are, they shout: THE FUTURE STILL EXISTS AND YOU ARE TIME-TRAVELLING DON’T LET ANYONE TELL YOU THIS IS THE BORING ROUTE THE FUTURE IS A PRIVILEGE THE FUTURE IS NOT GONE YET!
Copyright © 2022 Maggie Chirdo
Maggie Chirdo writes about American history, LGBTQ communities, pop culture, books, fashion, and whatever else keeps her up at night. Her poetry and journalism can be found in The Interlude, Entropy Magazine, Bitch, Texas Observer, and on her website. She loves cable-knit sweaters and still believes in the future.