When Venice Sinks

when venice sinks

we will be there

in our boats

watching


when venice sinks

we will see the phantom ripples

of gondolas murmuring through ghost towns

we will see the sun

set on its newest horizon


when venice sinks

we will have our new

atlantis


we will see sculptures harvested from the

sea floor

venetian masks subdued with barnacles

when venice sinks

fish will school in st. marks square

and all those bridges will be futile.



when los angeles burns

we will see our television screens

turn on and

off

like puppies pawing at the foot of an

empty bed


when los angeles burns

we will be star struck

with sunblock

write poetry about palm trees

and roads

plumed with dust


when los angeles burns

we shall construct new idols

in less sunny places

when los angeles burns

sands will reconvene on this

city of stars


when new york floods

We will see our skyscrapers slip into one story walk ups

when new york floods

when vendors vend

lifeboats and

swindlers sell

swim lessons


when new york floods

and times square becomes a public pool

pillaged by tourists

placated by pulsing lights


when new york floods

we will see the lady of liberty

gasping for breath


when paris suffocates

we will see the french air

famous for freshly baked bread

sour into ash


when paris suffocates

and the eiffel tower tilts into

tower of babel

consumed

by the heavens


when paris suffocates

we will see lovers choking on breath

from obscured romantic balconies

candles smothered by the

smoke


when san francisco crumbles

golden bridges into ocean ridges

a mansion no different from a tent


when san francisco crumbles

we will see power lines

suddenly powerless

when san francisco crumbles

and valleys shudders into plains

silicon melting into sea

cable cars plucked free



when our cities die

where will you be

?


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