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the city

By Niall Power


My own fangs distract me from

You

who was lying and told me I breathe

rapture

into a glass and let the fog take

*

a highway on the west side

You are the mouth of the Hudson

I don’t want to be home

if that means I am not moving in your

direction

If the needle that scratches the

bottom of the darkness

is the top of your skyline

leave me be on the ground

With the shame of the pretty people

on their way out to try and impress themselves

by impressing each other

With the swollen pride of the rats

whose history is richer than the billionaires

who think this town belongs to them

*

Once I lay in a twin bed

covering my body in nothing but dirt

and I was nothing but where my body was

An Aerial view formed an imagery of

everything that pulsed in nothing but

the city

The silence of an avenue in the middle of the night distracted the beating of a diseased heart

for as long as it took to find its footing

*

As a boy you started too big to be the smallest city on earth And you grew small enough to be a

prison

Before you took me and splayed me out

into your avenues and introduced me to angels

who beat me into the arms of the devils who took the time to heal me

*

How many times can a man love one island

From the amount of entries you would think

it were the veins into the heart of an elephant

A hidden implant of despair

A disappearing act of violence and the only success that can ever count

Peel the paint off the outdoor plants

and circle the parts of each park I got too high to stand in

I can count the mistresses on my toes

A grid system of anxious monkeys and

only bugs survive to make proper maps

Hold me in your tentacles and soothe the spots between my skin and my blood

*

The only consistent

besides the way my own spit smells on the back of my own hand

is the noises you make and the shadows

you steal from the bricks

Before you give back and before you laugh

tell me meditation is useless in the face of

what the women in the outer boroughs can bring me

*

God has been philosophized into irrelevance here

into a soul that’s been paved over

What’s right and wrong has been buried under a street that existed

only for a minute

You already never ended

You’ve turned me into a statue and replaced my heart with yours

like

you never existed without me

*

There are fingers in my shoes now

And when I walk I feel your skin grow old

It’s like you’ve watched my insides turn ill

Implanted me with a burning in my stomach

that's only medicine is faceless teething

You feed me with your time

and your separation is nothing without my body here

I don’t exist


Niall Power's first collection of poetry and fiction, Fall Risk, was published in 2018 Michelkin Publishing. He works as a freelance creative copywriter for companies like Nike and JUUL and has had a couple poems published in some literary magazines. He loves literature and art and is simply excited that Heliopause exists to churn out content for the creatives out there.

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