They look on like glass,
a rat for each pupil
and an apple in the neckline.
They hate like discarded furniture
and roll newspapers like sleeping bags.
They look like paper in the dark
with black and white hats
and desk-like bodies that
line the world's sidewalks where night
can prowl their abandoned, wood-carved bowels.
Where laundry and paper cards stretch like bandages
over the bleeding street,
leaving the moon-swept asphalt striped in gauze.
Each black pore being robed to death.
Not far away the breath of the ocean is standing
next to its oxygen tank waiting for signs that
it will breathe on its own again one day.
And lonely people rock back and forth on its beach
looking for life between their knees,
falling waves crash like men jumping from buildings
where beached whales swing to the windows
only to see emptied office arenas.
And hope still wanders below between
the trash and the doorsteps waiting for newspapers
to bounce off their skin.
The early morning streets
look like an abandoned truck,
its middle gutted back to conception
when it was just lines mated to a pencil.
The paperboys pick their fingernails
and sling their bags behind their backs
before mounting their wheeled steeds,
all hope on their shoulders,
they sail off like pioneers,
blazing trails through the tumbling furniture
whose bowels are a red morning wave.