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In The New Sun

Written by: Philip Levine | Biography
 Filaments of light 
slant like windswept rain.
The orange seller hawks into the sky, a man with a hat stops below my window and shakes his tassels.
Awake in Tetuan, the room filling with the first colors, and water running in a tub.
* A row of sparkling carp iced in the new sun, odor of first love, of childhood, the fingers held to the nose, or hours while the clock hummed.
The fat woman in the orange smock places tiny greens at mouth and tail as though she remembered or yearned instead for forests, deep floors of needles, and the hushed breath.
* Blue nosed cannisters as fat as barrels silently slipping by.
"Nitro," he says.
On the roof he shows me where Reuban lay down to fuck-off and never woke.
"We're takin little whiffs all the time.
" Slivers of glass work their way through the canvas gloves and burn.
Lifting my black glasses in the chemical light, I stop to squeeze one out and the asbestos glows like a hand in moonlight or a face in dreams.
* Pinpoints of blue along the arms, light rushing down across the breasts missing the dry shadows under them.
She stretches and rises on her knees and smiles and far down to the sudden embroidery of curls the belly smiles that three times stretched slowly moonward in a hill of child.
* Sun through the cracked glass, bartender at the cave end peeling a hard-boiled egg.
Four in the afternoon, the dogs asleep, the river must bridge seven parched flats to Cordoba by nightfall.
It will never make it.
I will never make it.
Like the old man in gray corduroy asleep under the stifled fan, I have no more moves, stranded on an empty board.
* From the high hill behind Ford Rouge, we could see the ore boats pulling down river, the rail yards, and the smoking mountain.
East, the city spreading toward St.
Clair, miles of houses, factories, shops burning in the still white snow.
"Share this with your brother," he said, and it was always winter and a dark snow.



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