City of God

by Tom Bajoras

Poet with notebook on his lap
listens and scans left to right,
right to left, city
laid out like a rotten buffet:
Buildings once cheerful yellow, inviting blue,
now faded to the unnamed color between old and dead,
streets where trash sings louder than birds,
two men arguing over the last seat on the bus.

The notebook waits patiently
while his master’s sickle eyes
reap a harvest of images.
Shaking off the dirt that clings to each,
he stores them in the pantry of his mind.

Satiated, ready,
his face radiant with expectant joy,
Poet descends from the mountain.
He writes exactly what he has seen.
He writes about majestic buildings,
gleaming spotless in summer sun,
birds of paradise,
streets of gold,
and the wedding feast
in the City of God.