Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Before Katrina


Before Katrina

What size, what color, how many?
said the New Orleans T-shirt merchant.

Say, buddy, jus' a minute, jus'
a minute,
said the inebriated man
on Canal Street, his life misplaced
behind his eyes somewhere. Talk to you
for a minute? he said.

Now I'm back behind gauze
of hotel drapery looking
at charcoal silhouettes of
financial towers. I gave
the boozy man some money,
and to the street-vendor,
I said big, blue, and one.

Copyright 2009 Hans Ostrom
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