Warehouses

There you’ll find the biggest spread of cement in town.
Bear up long enough under the lathe of daylight, and you might see
Upon its white ocean
A small figure walk from one warehouse to another,
Unconcerned by their unassimilable lengths.

After the pedestrian vanishes through a steel door, the scene appears empty.
But these expanses come to life with massive charters.
This district is city’s hammer, the region’s blowtorch,
Its node for creation, channeling, bringing intentions to life.

You’ll get to see more inhabitants of the buildings at fixed times,
When they exit to line up before a small truck for a sinecure of stale icings and broken crisps.

Twelve hours later, sleek low vehicles gather in the same spot
For quiet exchanges that must be done in darkness.

All the rest of the time,
Nothing’s here but a cold sun sending down Charles Sheeler trapezoid shadows,
And an occasional clang announcing a delivery’s completion.

In the parking lot, vacated by the night visitors as dawn peeps in,
A new structure settles into place,
An eighteen-wheeler parked diagonal like a knife,
A creased-faced woman on the driver side,
Dreaming off the twelve-hour hop she finished
On the interstate that hangs from a fence nearby.

Andy Oram
July 7, 2018

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