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as i step across cracked sidewalks,
my neighborhood’s melody
rises around me, an orchestra,
masterpiece of sadness and happiness –

through the lonely park pretending to be lively
(empty slides echo with children’s laughter),
under the heady cloud of citrus trees
(mingling with the saltiness of morning bacon)
past the rusting green barbed gates
surrounding fire-engine red school buildings…

the tinny sound of music plays in my ear
as crows fly into the sun.
i feel in my heart the soul of my neighborhood,
of people trying desperately to hold onto their dreams,
trapped in a small city —

and i offer all my love
to the empty houses and tearstained pillows.
following an endless dream,
i take my first step off of the cracked sidewalks
and into the sky —

the neighborhood’s melody plays
long after i have gone.


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